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PNS Daily Newscast - September 20, 2019 


A whistleblower complaint against President Trump sets off tug-of-war between Congress and the White House; and students around the world strike today to demand action on climate change.

2020Talks - September 20, 2019. (3 min.)  


Climate change is a big issue this election season, and global climate strikes kick off, while UAW labor strikes continue.

Daily Newscasts

Looming 'Crisis' for Boomer's Mental Health - Is NY Ready?

March 19, 2007


As New York's baby boomers enter their golden years, there's worry that New York's senior mental health care system isn't up to the job. The New York Senate is pledging more than 2 million additional dollars for geriatric mental health programs - and mental health advocates are calling on the Assembly to follow their lead. Michael Friedman, chair of the Geriatric Mental Health Alliance of New York, says the state isn't ready to meet the mental health needs of baby boomers entering their golden years. In this budget session, he says the Senate has tackled the problem, proposing two million dollars in extra funding, and he notes the Assembly hasn't followed their lead.

"And as we look ahead over the next 25 years with the vast growth in this population, it's perfectly clear that we're going to be in a crisis in not so many years."

Assembly leaders point to the their smaller spending budget, making it tough to provide funding for senior mental health care. Friedman belives better mental healthcare for seniors will save money in the long run, and the scope of the problem is bigger than many people think, especially when it comes to suicide prevention.

"Most people think of suicide as problem to older teenagers and young adults. But older adults actually commit suicide much more frequently."

Depression in older adults leads to more heart attacks, strokes, and other preventable diseases. Studies suggest seniors recover quicker and have fewer expensive medical procedures when they are treated for depression.

Guillermo Martinez, spokesman for Assemblyman Peter Rivera, said the Assembly is concerned about mental healthcare, but other issues took priority. But, he notes there is still time to come up with a solution.

"It's not like it's the Senate just pushing the issue. There needs to be a balance struck with limited funds and who's going to get what, but still it'll be negotiated. So at the end of the day it could be a lot more money."

Charles Lane/Eric Mack, Public News Service - NY