Mental health crisis at the hospital’s door | Philly Health Insider


This week we look at how hospitals can become unsafe for patients with mental illness and give you an update on Philadelphia’s behavioral health commissioner.

Later in this edition we do a road trip through the Acela corridor counting NCI Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers (with a little trivia!).

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— Abraham Gutman and Aubrey Whelan, Inquirer health reporters, @abrahamgutman and @aubreywhelan.

One in three security breaches at Philadelphia-area hospitals involves a patient suffering from mental illness, a pattern that emerged when our colleague Sarah Gantz began tracking citations from Pennsylvania hospitals going back to 2023.

Some of the most serious violations:

Inspection reports say understaffing, lack of proper emergency protocols and insufficient training are part of the problem.

In recent years, more patients with behavioral health needs have come to Philadelphia-area hospitals. And places like the emergency department—noisy, bright, and lacking privacy—are “really the worst place to be,” Deborah Cunningham, vice president of behavioral health at Principal line Cheers, he said to Sarah.

So what can hospitals do?

Main Line Health has doubled its number of inpatient behavioral health bedsand Crozer-Chester opened a new outpatient center.

A patient advocate wants hospitals to give their staff simulation training to help them understand what a patient in crisis is experiencing.

Watch Sarah’s story for more details. efforts to prevent such security breaches let it happen again.

The latest news to pay attention to.

  1. New Jersey is proposing a new rule to better protect patients from sexual misconduct by doctors. The rule would require doctors to inform patients of their right to have another medical professional present during sensitive examinations. Wendy Ruderman explains.

  2. New year, new CEO. Trinity Health Mid-Atlantic CEO James Woodward will retire in January after six years leading the system. Harold Brubaker reports.

  3. Chinese biotech makers like WuXi AppTec have forged close relationships with American startups and universities and hired hundreds locally. But as Congress seeks to crack down on China’s efforts to dominate biotechnology, companies’ business partners in the Philadelphia area are looking for alternatives to take your ideas from the lab to the market.

  4. You don’t typically find a half-acre farm next to a hospital helipad, like the Delema G. Deaver Wellness Farm on the Lankenau Medical Center campus. Aubrey took an informational trip to the farm that supplies about 4,000 pounds of fresh produce annually. to patients experiencing food insecurity.

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This week’s number: 13.

Here’s How Many NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers You’ll Pass If You Drive I-95 from Boston to DC That includes three centers in Philadelphia, which started last week with just two.

He National Cancer Institute awarded its highest designation for Jefferson’s Sidney Kimmel Cancer Centerwhich joins Penn’s Abramson Center and Temple Center fox chase Cancer Center with the “comprehensive” distinction. Philadelphia now has more than any other American city except New York, which has four.

Those 13 comprehensive cancer centers along the 400-mile stretch between Boston and D.C. account for nearly a quarter of the country’s total of 57 centers. By comparison, Texas has three and California has eight.

If we zoom out a little, the count increases even more. We can add another comprehensive center in New Hampshire, two in Virginia and one more in Pittsburgh. (Relax, yinzers, we have more. Come on, birds!)

Fun fact: with the jeff center improvement, Sidney Kimmel is the only person in the United States to have his name on two comprehensive cancer centers. Can you guess where the second one is? (Find the toRespond at the end of the newsletter.)

State inspectors visited Penn Presbyterian Medical Center once between August and January and I found no problems.

“When you hear the sound of hooves, think of horses, not zebras,” goes the old medical saying.

Recently, a patient with low back pain forced internist Jeffrey Millstein to reconsider such heuristics. The patient was suffering from an incredibly common symptom, but her pain was actually caused by a rare condition: to mass that encompasses your spine.

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Millstein listened to her concerns, noted her continued pain, and ordered an MRI that detected the growth.

“As physicians, we must keep our antennas up,” Penn Primary Care’s regional medical director wrote in an expert opinion, sharing what he has learned about the lessons for doctors and patients. of such encounters with unusual issues.

making moves

We told you a few weeks ago that Jill Bowen, Philadelphia’s behavioral health commissioner, quit for a concert in Vermont.

the city has announced his replacement, at least for now.

Marquita Williams will serve as interim commissioner of the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability Services. Williams has worked at DBHIDS and Community Behavioral Health for more than a decade, most recently as a senior executive advisor to Bowen.

A city spokesperson told us there will be a national search for the permanent commissioner.

Bulletin board

Has been concern in recent years that taking Tylenol during pregnancy increases the child’s risk of autism, ADHD, or other intellectual disabilities. This notion was even cited in lawsuits against drug manufacturers.

Is there any relationship between painkillers and autism? The answer appears to be no, according to new research from Drexel University and the Karolinska Institute of Sweden. (Home of the Nobel Prize in Medicine!)

What’s good about this? new JAMA study is that it used a large Swedish database that had information on siblings, which allowed aspects of both nature and nurture to be statistically controlled for.

The researchers analyzed data from 2.5 million children born between 1995 and 2019 in Sweden. The researchers found that when comparing siblings, there was no association between Drug use and neurodevelopmental disorders..

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That’s it for us this week! We hope the Sixers are still in the playoffs the next time we arrive in your inbox. Speaking of orthopedics, what is it like for you to see it? Joel Embiid play? Are you seeing signs of his recovery or an injury we’re missing? Eager viewers want to know.

(Oh, and we didn’t forget to give you an answer to our trivia question about cancer centers: the second center named after Sidney Kimmel is the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.)

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