THE BLOG
08/14/2008 06:08 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Reflecting on the Platform Draft - Chicago on Mental Healthcare

CHICAGO - A call to order came on a plan to introduce a topic that many in America try to shy away from -- mental health. At the Platform meeting held in Chicago a discussion was formed on how to introduce healthcare coverage that includes full mental illness benefits to all citizens -- and how current healthcare plans discriminate persons who are suffering with diseases such as Depression or Bipolar Disorder.

A panel of six citizens came together on August 26, 2008 - some who wanted to express concerns on mental health which included the homeless, some whose family loved one were suffering from the disease to overall issues relating to treatment, use of drugs, alternative methods such as talk therapy treatment and prevention. Perhaps the foundation was laid -- as this citizen reporter started hearing Michelle Obama talk about this very cause. From casualties war veterans coming back mentally scared, to families that are living with a death of a love one who serviced in the military, and now the DNC Platform regarding overall mental health.

A statement from the DNC Platform:

"Meaningful Benefits. Families should have health insurance coverage similar to what Members of Congress enjoy. They should not be forced to bear the burden of skyrocketing premiums, unaffordable deductibles or benefit limits that leave them at financial risk when they become sick. We will finally achieve long-overdue mental health and addiction treatment parity.'

The goal of the Mental Healthcare platform was an overdue debate of showcasing how America sees victims of mental illness. A platform member named Helene Rhodes who's daughter name Avigal Rhodes who suffers from bipolar disorder had this to say.

Note: Also included in the audio video were Helen, Avigal and Harry Rhodes, Corey and Gowhara Abedin, who agreed to be interviewed.

Here is an excerpt from a letter given to me by meeting member:

I hope Senator Obama [will] stick to his position that there be quality and sufficient mental Health assessment and treatment for veterans; that there be mental health treatment coverage parity, that there be careful study and action on health care coverage for all people.

-- Letter from Sue Shimon, Executive Director of WilPower.

Let's hope that Barack Obama as President will thrive to see this healthcare plan come to pass, and have all types of health issues coverage for all Americans and their families as he has outlined in his DNC Platform.