I read with interest the recent story regarding New Jersey Governor Codey’s Task Force on Mental Health’s recent meeting at the Bergen County Community College. First, I commend Governor Codey on taking action on this important topic.
On the other hand, I was disappointed to see the story focus on the tragic story of a family whose daughter suffered a serious traumatic brain injury. Traumatic brain injury is an organic neurologic injury. It is also uncontroverted that person’s with acquired traumatic brain injury are unable to obtain the medical care they need and action needs to be taken to correct this. However, to discuss traumatic brain injury in the context of “mental health”, does this devastating injury a disservice.
For too long, people have thought of brain injury as a “mental illness” relegating it to a psychological condition or disease and therefore denying survivors of the medical care that they need.
Traumatic brain injury is a major public health problem in the United States as each year more than three million people sustain a traumatic brain injury. I urge Governor Codey and the Legislature to adopt a recent law that was passed in Texas that forbids insurance carriers from discriminating against person with acquired traumatic brain injury and requires carriers to provide the same level of medical coverage that other physical injuries enjoy today.
You can read the story I read here.