Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Patty Duke Launches Online Center for Mental Wellness


For Immediate Release - August 17, 2005

Patty Duke Launches Online Center for Mental Wellness - Encourages individuals and families battling Bipolar Disorder to share stories

(COEUR D’ALENE, ID) In a continuing effort to provide help, information, and resources to people struggling with mental illness, Patty Duke today announced the rollout of her Online Center for Mental Wellness at www.pattyduke.net.

The center will be a “virtual” gathering place for individuals and families looking for information on Bipolar Disorder specifically and mental illness generally. Also, Duke is asking people to share their experiences and success stories regarding mental illness with her and the online community to help others understand that they are not alone. This can be done on her blog site Patty Duke's Blog Site or on the “Ask Patty Duke” page on Duke’s web site.

“I have been blessed with a long and fulfilling career on the stage, on television, and in the movies,” said Patty Duke. “But I’ve come to realize that one of my most important roles in life is to assist people who struggle with mental illness get the help they need to live productive, happy lives.”

In the near future, the Online Center will offer CDs, tapes, books, and seminars, as well as sponsoring events that bring medical professionals and mental health experts together on topics of importance to people struggling with mental illness and their families.

Duke, who won the 1962 Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for her role as Helen Keller in “The Miracle Worker”, has written two bestselling books chronicling her life in show business and her struggles with Bipolar Disorder. She has been an advocate for more than 20 years on the topic of mental illness and has worked to reduce the stigma of the diagnosis.

Patty Duke has been asked to testify in Congress in September on the topic of mental illness by Representative Sue Myrick (R-NC), which will be her third time testifying.