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First Time-Door is Open for Family Discussion of Bipolar Disorder
Date:11/25/2009

Broad Political Endorsements, Business, and Press Join Effort to Educate

MEMPHIS, Tenn., Nov. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Once again, the National Bipolar Foundation and the MedicAlert Foundation receive a proclamation endorsing their "Safe 'til Stable" program, which is now being widely accepted as a preventive health care measure for bipolar disorder. Today, the National Bipolar Foundation received a proclamation of endorsement via Federal Express Priority Mail from the Lt. Governor of Louisiana Mitch Landrieu. The National Bipolar Foundation states that lawmakers and statesmen are jumping on board with this social movement. Last week, there was a proclamation and press conference held at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, with documented experts standing united in support of the new "Safe 'til Stable" program. The keynote speaker at that press conference was Memphis Mayor A.C. Wharton. The day before, the National Bipolar Foundation received by express delivery a proclamation co-signed by the Speaker of the Senate, Ron Ramsey, and Senator Mark Norris of the Tennessee State Senate.

People living with bipolar disorder are being brought to the forefront of conversations across the country. The National Bipolar Foundation has board members in California, New York, Minnesota, Louisiana, Oregon, and Tennessee. It also has volunteers in 38 states. All these centers of influence are now focusing on the idea of reducing the stigma associated with bipolar disorder. The founder of the National Bipolar Foundation, Marc Kullman, states that the more the stigma is reduced, then the more people will come forward to seek help for the disorder. Kullman was quoted three weeks ago in the Boston Globe in defense of those living with bipolar disorder and dismissing the perceived correlation between bipolar disorder and criminal activity. His point was collaborated by several medical doctors. That same week on CBS News Radio, Marc Kullman was given another opportunity to explain that people living with bipolar disorder are no more a problem than any other group found in society as a whole. Kullman concluded by encouraging people to search for lists of people with bipolar disorder on the Internet. One will find an amazing array of people, and find out why, without question, bipolar disorder is called the disease of geniuses.

The National Bipolar Foundation has released this week a Public Service Announcement for television and issued it to over 3000 network affiliate stations across the country. The message of the commercial is, "we can talk about diabetes, cancer, and other illnesses, so why should bipolar disorder be spoken about in a whisper?" As the holidays bring families together across the nation, the commercial is expected to receive tremendous air-time. As stated by Mayor A C Wharton in the press conference last week, "The holidays are a chance to reach out to that family member who doesn't quite fit in, or is having a rough time while all the rest of the family bonds and enjoys the day."

Dr Kennard Brown, Executive Vice-Chancellor and Chief of Staff at the University of Tennessee, Health Science Center, said that, "the National Bipolar Foundation and its new 'Safe 'til Stable' program was a great break-through for people living with bipolar." Dr. Brown went on to say that the National Bipolar Foundation would receive all the support that the medical program could provide, and furthermore, that he would be remiss if he did not fully support and endorse this program. Dr. Brown is now leading a charge that challenges others to donate, and is in discussions with the foundation about possible research.

Brad Champlin, former Senior Vice-President of Region Bank Corp, and co-founder of the National Bipolar Foundation, has been quoted on many occasions as saying what a great asset bipolar people are to a company. If only we could harness their energy. Mr. Champlin does not have bipolar disorder, but has been an outspoken proponent of the foundation because he sees value in all people. In his community, he is a well-known businessman, and forward thinker among his peers. It is no surprise that Mr. Champlin wants to help reduce stigma, educate, and seek affordable health care for all people living with bipolar disorder.

The MedicAlert Foundation, a cooperative partner in the "Safe 'til Stable" program, sees this effort by both foundations as the next great step for their foundation. The cooperative venture has produced a preventative care program called "Safe 'til Stable." It provides vital medical information to emergency responders in a time of need through our live 24-hour emergency response service. In a medical emergency, this can help reduce the trauma experienced by individuals impacted with bipolar disorder. If an individual experiences an event, first responders on the scene (e.g., law enforcement, emergency services personnel, etc.) will look for a medical ID with the "MEDIC ALERT" symbol. The Safe 'til Stable program is a milestone in that those with bipolar disorder will have a voice in times when they cannot speak for themselves, and will be properly routed in times of emergency, providing a sense of security for the individual and those close to them.

The National Bipolar Foundation (NBPF) was founded in 2007 by Marc Kullman in order to reduce stigma, educate, and seek affordable healthcare for those people living with bipolar disorder. A National Awareness Initiative has been launched to spread awareness through press releases, press conferences, proclamations, influential people, and an online campaign through social media networking. The MedicAlert Foundation, founded in 1956, is the leader in providing identification and emergency medical information. Together both foundations have developed a program that will prevent the misdirection, misdiagnosis, and mistreatments of participants, saving precious time and dollars.

Lawmakers at all levels see that bipolar disorder is everywhere and across all racial, ethnic, religious, and socio-economic barriers. It deserves the attention of all citizens to wipe away the stigma. The National Bipolar Foundation takes great note of the late Senator Ted Kennedy's efforts in championing the cause of the mentally ill. This is clearly an area in which all Americans can join hands and help along. It has long been an issue that is supported on a bipartisan basis. It seems that the National Bipolar Foundation and its many supporters can stand in unison as Americans.

SOURCE National Bipolar Foundation


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