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June 30th, 2010
08:27 AM ET

Mental health impact of BP oil spill

Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals wants BP to pay 10 million dollars for mental health services for people on the Gulf coast impacted by the oil spill.

"There exists anger, anxiety and uncertainty among the families and communities affected by the spill, which will easily manifest into addiction and various forms of mental health crisis if not confronted," said Alan Levine, head of the department in a letter to BP's Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles.

This comes nearly one week after an Alabama fisherman hired by BP to help clean Gulf waterways committed suicide on board one of his own boats. BP says it is reviewing the request to offer mental health services.

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention one person dies by suicide about every 15 minutes in the United States. Click here for tips on How to Save a Friend from the Brink.

Filed under: Elizabeth Cohen
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. PepsiJuror

    Mental Health Services? Who in their right or sane mind would volunteer to see a Psychiatrist?

    Psychiatrists put people on mind altering and addictive medication. Psychiatrists lobotomize people. Psychiatrists electroshock people. Psychiatrists lock people up in sanitariums.

    Hmmm, on second thought, this might be long term business for the Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals and Psychiatrists.

    June 30, 2010 at 12:18 pm |
  2. Mrs. Eileen G. Curras widow to Hernandez (WWII)

    I doubt the Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals will get paid by BP 10 million dollars for mental health services for people on the Gulf coast impacted by the oil spill. In my opinion, they do not care and the Federal Government will protect the Big Enterprise and not the people. The "Free Enterprise" is getting a free ticket. Yes, it has taken a week for Alabama to make the brilliant connection. Another example of the sense of responsibility.

    June 30, 2010 at 12:54 pm |
  3. Smith in Oregon

    As historically found in Valdez, Alaska such huge Oil spills and disasters on the environment directly result in a major windfall for the Attorney's, MD's and Health Industry. Lately AMA Medical Doctors have already been raising their health costs to help quickly offset the losses in their 401K's and Stock Investments which largely tanked in 2008.

    I imagine this major financial windfall for the Attorneys and Doctors will attract flocks of AMA doctors across America to relocate their practices in the Gulf States to treat hundreds of thousands of cases of depression, mental health issues, pulmonary issues, skin cancers, stomach and colon cancers which result from the losses of these people's livelihood, and exposure to the poisonous, toxic and carcinogenic crude Oil in the air, food and water.

    June 30, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  4. Dean Compton

    Dear Kyra,
    I really love your broadcasts in the morning and look forward to them each day.
    Concerning all the "oil burn off" stuff BP is doing, how is it that the EPA and Air Quality Control people let this keep going when it effects our
    O-Zone and health concerns to a great extreme? Yet, they make me smog my Honda and sell my two cycle weed eater?
    Should we all play by the same rules? This should also include Jet aircraft which spews out millions of acre feet of pollutants on each take off. Why isn't air craft, even the small gas engine crafts effected by the EPA to meet smog requirements? Just think of what the space shuttle must do every time it takes off. Obviously no smog device there??

    July 2, 2010 at 2:30 pm |