Florida’s Legislature may consider revamping the state’s Baker Act law that oversees the involuntary commitment of people thought to be a danger to themselves or others, the News Service of Florida reports. Bills filed in both the House and Senate would look at the amount of time individuals are screened, and may consider using remote, telemedicine consultations to evaluate patients, the News Service reports.
Two South Florida lawmakers have filed bills that would require a review of Florida's "Baker Act,'' which allows for the involuntary commitment of people who have mental illnesses and are considered dangers to themselves or others. The proposals (SB 514 and HB 505), filed by Sen. Joseph Abruzzo, D-Boynton Beach, and Rep.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office will pay $1.15 million to the estate of a woman with bipolar disorder who died in a jail cell after refusing food and medication, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Jennifer DeGraw was jailed in 2009, after he husband tried to hospitalize his manic wife under the state’s Baker Act for the mentally ill, the Times reports.
Clinics that provide anabolic steroids and other controlled drugs to anyone with enough cash - from teen-age body-builders to pro baseball players - have festered in Florida because of a loophole in the law.
A bill aimed at closing it comes before the Senate Health Policy Committee Tuesday afternoon. The bill, (SB 746) by Sen. Eleanor Sobel, D-Hollywood, would give the Agency for Health Care Administration authority over all clinics, not just those that accept insurance.
Sujatha Guduru of Oviedo had a 20-year history of mental illness. She had required hospitalization in a psychiatric ward three times, was seeing a mental-health counselor and taking psychotropic drugs. Yet Guduru was still able to walk into a local gun shop and buy a revolver.
In the wake of the Newtown, CT, mass shooting of children by a troubled adolescent late last year, many states are trying to improve monitoring and require treatment for those who are deemed a danger to themselves or others.
After he fired six shots in his home -- aiming at rats, he said --76-year-old Thomas Judd of Tampa was “Baker Acted,” taken to a crisis center for an involuntary mental health examination. As usual, he was found to be suffering from schizophrenia. His guns were taken away.
But now Judd has his guns back, after a proceeding in Hillsborough Circuit Court, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
Miami Herald columnist Fred Grimm tells the story of a 26-year-old Iraq War vet who was holed up in a townhouse with 20 assault weapons and plenty of ammunition, delusional, angry and suffering from paranoia. So many things could have gone wrong -- but because talented and dedicated public servants got involved, they didn't.
Think of it as a kind of Christmas miracle. That what should have happened actually happened. That a war-damaged veteran got the help he needed. That a terrifying scenario — an unhinged former soldier holed up with a cache of assault weapons and ammo — was defused.
Stephanie Ross visited Lucious Smith to assist with his Medicaid benefits. DADE CITY - Since day one, police say, social worker Stephanie Ross had been uncomfortable visiting Lucious Smith, a man with a criminal history dating to 1977 when he was charged with carrying a concealed ice pick and resisting arrest.