Vanderbilt students protest over mental health coverage
Posted On July 1, 2021
Students at Vanderbilt University have called for an end to mental health insurance coverage as part of the school’s mental health awareness campaign.
The group, called the Vanderbilt Students for Mental Health Awareness, said students have been asked to sign a petition that asks Vanderbilt to eliminate mental health coverages.
“As the world becomes more diverse, we need to recognize the fact that our students have lived through this and are living through it,” said Dr. Roberta Johnson, the vice president for academic affairs.
“The way we have responded to mental illness is based on a belief that it is not a problem for a person to be in mental health care.”
Dr. Johnson said mental health plans should not be required by the government.
She also said the campaign would have little impact on mental health providers.
“If we can just make sure people are getting the help they need, that we have access to that help, that’s a win-win situation,” Dr. Smith said.
“But we can’t be complacent.
We are seeing more and more mental health services in schools. “
This is the most pressing issue facing our nation right now.
We are seeing more and more mental health services in schools.
There’s a growing number of students who are being diagnosed with mental illness and we have to address this.”
Johnson and Smith, along with members of the Vanderbilt Women’s Society, have been protesting outside the school since January and March to demand that the school stop using mental health covers.
Vanderbilt has said it would end its mental health policies in 2017 if the group can reach 50 percent of the enrolled students.
They have also said they will continue to fight for the inclusion of mental health and physical health coverings.
Dr. Scott B. Smith, a Vanderbilt associate professor of psychiatry, is a co-founder of the group.
He is also a cofounder of Vanderbilt Women.
“We are in the midst of a massive mental health crisis that is affecting all of us,” he said.
The campaign has so far raised $7,500 for mental health funding, including the $250 that was raised during the first day of the protest.
The Vanderbilt Students For Mental Health awareness group was started by the group’s vice president, Dr. Robinson.
“For those of us who are on the frontlines of mental illness, we have seen firsthand the impact that mental illness can have on families, and how the mental health system has become a place where people can’t trust each other,” Dr Smith said in a statement.
“It is time that mental health professionals were able to be on campus to talk with students and share their stories, so that we can be more aware of the health disparities that exist across our campus and the fact we are still at a place in our nation where we are seeing so much mental illness.”
A sign hangs in front of the campus recreation center that reads, ‘Nestle is here to help us all’ source The Tennessean article Nashville, Tenn.
(AP) A Tennessee state legislator is calling for an increase in mental illness coverage, as a growing percentage of adults have been diagnosed with the condition.
Sen. David Perry, R-Henderson, introduced a bill Tuesday that would allow health plans to cover mental health treatments and services for a limited number of people.
The bill would also require health plans and health insurers to provide a “mental health literacy” course to their employees.
Perry’s bill would not require insurance companies to cover the mental illness of their employees, but it would allow for them to provide mental health benefits.
The Senate voted to advance the bill Tuesday, but the House has yet to take up it.
Perry said he thinks there are “lots of ways we can improve mental health education in this country.”
The Tennessee Board of Health and the American Academy of Pediatrics have also expressed concerns about the proposed legislation.
“In addition to providing an avenue for providers and insurers to offer mental health help, the bill also addresses a number of other issues,” Perry said in the statement.
The Tennessee Senate on Wednesday approved a measure that would create a mental health board, and the House passed a similar measure earlier this month.