Saturday, March 25, 2006

Inmate's Death Part of Bigger Issue

Polk Inmate's Death Part of Bigger Issue | "Hundreds of inmates in the Polk County jail system -- almost one in five -- are on medicine for mental disorders. The Special Needs Unit, or SNU, can house 30 men and 16 women, a fraction of the 400-plus on medication.

And the number who take psychotropic medications isn't a true picture of those with mental illnesses. Others aren't on medication for a variety of reasons.

As many as three-fourths of people arrested who have mental illnesses aren't on their medications when they come to the jail, said Derek Zimmerman, mental-health liaison for the jail."