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The Miracle Worker: Edward M. Kennedy

Tamara Hill Updated: Aug 31st 2009

Senator Edward Kennedy pushed for equality among the underprivileged and desired reform for America's mental health system. He was a gift from God. It was as if God had reached down from heaven through Sen. Kennedy to influence the very pinnacle of CHANGE. Following the funeral held August 29, 2009 that immersed America in sorrow, yet in gratitude, the torch shall remain lit and glow brighter as we encapsulate his spirit to finish the race he began in 1962. If it were not for the service of the Kennedy's and for their endless dedication to equality for mental and physical disabilities, Congress would not have passed the Mental Health Parity bill of 2008. The bill allows insurers to cover ANY mental health condition listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. Individuals who struggle with substance abuse are also included. According to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "Illness of the brain must be treated just like illness anywhere else in the body."

US CapitolThe Kennedy's are the epitome of elegance and of the suffering that plagues human existence. If it were not for supporters of psychology's battle against mental health inequality such as Sen. Patrick Kennedy, who suffers from depression and substance dependence, the Mental Health Parity would have been discounted. To show adoration for one who fervently reached out to society, who tirelessly sought advancement, and took our needs to Congress to rid us of the bind of politics, we must carry on the legacy of the Kennedy era.

May the late Sen. Kennedy's spirit remain in a little of each of us and may he always be an example for future change. If you would like to contribute to the "race" please visit the following websites. For more information on the 2008 Mental Health Parity: click here.

American Psychological Association's (APA) potential place in health care reform is available here and here.

Consider writing a letter to your Senator or President Obama to support comprehensive legislation that will include an extension of the 5% Medicare psychology payment restoration and fully integrate psychologists and psychological services into the delivery system: APA Practice Organization and Mental Health America

Go to APA Practice Organization and type in your zip code on the upper right hand side into the search engine called "Legislative action center."

As Ghandi once said "Be the change you wish to see in the world!"

 

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