Mental health care ad­vo­cate

Austin American-Statesman - - OPINION -

Re: July 2 com­men­tary “Cen­tral Health can boast of sig­nif­i­cant strides.”

I thor­oughly en­joyed Lew Lit­tle’s col­umn. He cor­rectly noted Cen­tral Health’s role in adding fund­ing for in­pa­tient psy­chi­atric care and con­ven­ing stake­hold­ers to work to­ward bridg­ing fund­ing gaps in the mental health safety net in Austin and Travis County.

Where he didn’t com­plete the pic­ture was to ac­knowl­edge the key role that Judge Guy Her­man has played in the devel­op­ment of a health care district here and the fo­cus on mental health upon which the judge has been so in­sis­tent. It was Her­man who iden­ti­fied the need for a com­mu­nity re­sponse to the needs for in­pa­tient psy­chi­atric beds here, and it was he who rec­og­nized that this was a com­mu­nity is­sue rather than the sole re­spon­si­bil­ity of Austin Travis County In­te­gral Care.

Cen­tral Health has ad­mirably car­ried for­ward the ban­ner raised by Judge Her­man, and our com­mu­nity is bet­ter for both.

Dr. Jim van nor­man Med­i­cal di­rec­tor, atCiC van­


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