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New Zealander's death puts mental patients' restraint in Japan under spotlight

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Psychiatry kills.

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

It's hard to imagine a more horrible way to die. At least I hope this can bring about some positive changes.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Japan puts its patients in restraints for an average of 96 days compared to a few hours in other countries? This sounds like a 'set and forget' practice. I'd be very interested to know why they restrain patients for such a long time.

25 ( +28 / -3 )

If someone is not put under restraint(s), if they have lost touch with reality and are running around yelling and falling, why is that a wrong thing?

Secondly, if Japan has more time in restraints than other countries, I wonder if its not because Japan may not medicate its patients as heavily as other nations.

-27 ( +7 / -34 )

If he or she injures themselves while running around in the facility it would also be their fault.

-19 ( +7 / -26 )

"Kichigai Byoin" mental hospitals in Japan had been called that way long time. Japanese have strong prejudices about mental illnesses and human rights of the in-patients are ignored. Nobody knows what's going on in mental hospitals in Japan. People used to check family trees carefully if they had a people with mental illness before they marry.

22 ( +22 / -0 )

Suing a Japanese hospital? Good luck with that! (tried for malpractice and lost)

Being restrained all the time would make me even more mad...

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Perhaps this is one reason why so many people are hesitant to seek care for mental health issues..... 96 hours tied to a bed! Can't imagine even imagine it.

21 ( +21 / -0 )

Nothing will change in Japan regarding mental health. It's the Middle Ages here still. My advice to any foreigner in Japan with mental health issues? Keep quiet about it, especially to your employer, or go home.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

What do you expect for free medical care, the Mayo Clinic?

-21 ( +4 / -25 )

English teacher was sent to a psychiatric hospital near Tokyo on April 30 after showing signs of losing touch with reality such as screaming and running around,

Losing touch with reality? I'm pretty sure that's what happens at just about every English school.

RIP

1 ( +6 / -5 )

He said he was not considering taking legal action against the hospital, but the campaigners nonetheless urged a change in practice.

I wish they would. I wonder why they haven't - having to travel to and from, dragging it out for ever. I can understand that. I hope some good comes out of this - some change to this appalling treatment of vulnerable people who need help, not punishment,

8 ( +9 / -1 )

What do you expect for free medical care...?

He was on the JET Programme. So he was paying into government health insurance. So he didn't receive "free medical care."

26 ( +26 / -0 )

Please use more technology. Now we can detect from a video if someone is trying to harm himself in his room. Don't get me wrong I am not against things like death penalty for hardcore criminals or restraining some pateints. But we need to keep in mind that first and foremost we are human.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

RIP, Japan is years behind in medicine.

9 ( +14 / -5 )

The autopsy result was inconclusive, but a doctor at the second hospital said there was a possibility that the extended physical restraint led to cardiac arrest, Pat said.

Ethically a third party doctor should do the autopsy and not the hospital...I wish a foreign association would sue the hospital, if not for Kelly Savage because it is too late unfortunately, at least for this to never happen again, being attached on a bed for 10 days , this is not medicine, this is barbaric medieval medicine.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

sometimes Japanese society is really disgusting.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Sounds like some state of the art treatment. RIP dude.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

i was restrained for 7 hours with no food or water, and not allowed any contact or access to my medication for a nerve related disorder. i was chained to metal chair. after six months i still have pain. at least i didn't die. positive point is that i learnt not to cross the road when there is a red no walking light.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

He was on the JET Programme.

How did he get through the screening? When I was applying for JET I remember there being a question about mental health and if there was a personal history. From my understanding, this guy suffered mental health issues while in NZ. I can't think of a worse developed nation to visit if one has mental health issues.

I am certainly not excusing what this hospital did but I do have to ask, if someone is a danger to them and others, what is a better method? I'm guessing most western countries just heavily medicate but Japan is not keen on such things. An empty room would be nearly as bad as being strapped? More dangerous.

I feel for his family and friends. A horrific way to die.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Seriously until they found him 10 days later! !!!!!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Another sign of how Japan is an advanced and civilized country I guess....

I just love it that the usual nationalists and Japan apologists don't rush to their keyboard on that one in order to explain that it's us who don't get the Japanese culture.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Goodlucktoyou - Harsh.....what country was that in?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

kansai.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

boy does this article leave out a lot of info. first of all, and most important, the man had a history of being bi-polar. maybe five years ago, he had been in a psychiatric hospital in new zealand for five weeks and was cleared to leave. he later was accepted into the JET programme and had been living in japan for the past few years. just recently, he stopped taking his new bi-polar meds because he didn't like the side effects; hence, he started exhibiting signs and was volunatarily hospitalized by his brother.

the man was a danger to staff and had to be restrained. since he refused to take his meds, the hospital felt that they had to restrain him most of the time since they didn't know when another outburst could happen. usually in cases when a patient is restrained for a long duration, a blood thinning agent is given to prevent deep vein thrombosis, which is what they suspect he died of. but for the most part, i think what the hospital did was by the book and appropriate for this situation.

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

If someone is not put under restraint(s), if they have lost touch with reality and are running around yelling and falling, why is that a wrong thing?

Perhaps a padded cell?

11 ( +11 / -0 )

I think being strapped down for 10 days would definitely make me lose my marbles especially if I did not understand why. What a terrifying position to be in. Note to self...whatever you do, do not run around shouting and give anyone here the impression you have lost touch with reality!

10 ( +10 / -0 )

One of my English students was a psychiatrist. He explained the set up in medical hospitals. This is HIS opinion, not mine. He said that the most popular courses were those connected with surgery. The reason, he explained was that it was there that you can make the most money.

Surgeons are not allowed to accept money but apparently, before a major operation, the surgeon might be given a bottle of whisky, which when opened, could be found to contain a nice wad of banknotes.

Then there were the various specialised subjects and, at the bottom was psychiatry. They would take anybody, he said. Because psychiatry is the least thankful discipline. No perks. Lots of "What shall we do with granddad, he's gone "funny" and the neighbours are beginning to talk." And NO ONE gets cured. If anyone checked into a mental hospital and checks out a few weeks later COMPLETELY CURED with no neuroses, psychoses whatsoever, having attained the dizzy height of "normal," it would be a miracle.

A good friend of mine almost committed suicide after being given psychiatric drugs recently. I have lost two family members to this pseudoscience.

Psychiatry kills!

6 ( +11 / -5 )

@goodlucktoyou:

You mean you got hit by a car when jaywalking, had surgery, spent time in a wheelchair, and are still recovering and healing. That sounds hard, but nothing to do with this.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

3 months with your legs and arms tied to the bed? Sounds like a medieval torture to me. Why not giving him some drugs to calm down? Medical marijuana would do wonders.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I just love it that the usual nationalists and Japan apologists don't rush to their keyboard on that one in order to explain that it's us who don't get the Japanese culture.

I wish Japan-bashers had done the same. Unfortunately looking at your post (and many others) they haven't.

Bad outcomes from questionable clinical decisions happen everyday in all countries. Medical blunders do also happen, everywhere. What some opportunist posters are doing on this thread i.e use a (potential) medical error to spit their hatred at japan & its culture, call J society 'disgusting', backwards etc is imo uncalled for.

From what I have read elsewhere, Kelly Savage loved Japan and had a blast during his time in japan, probably the best/most fulfilling 2 years in his life. This is a medical issue, not a cultural one.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Perhaps this is one reason why so many people are hesitant to seek care for mental health issues

I didn't think it was common knowledge that if you enter a facility that you would be chained to a bed for weeks on end.

I don't know his family situation but I am sure my parents would have been on the 1st plane to Japan to take me back to the U.S. to seek treatment there. At least there, I could communicate easily with the medical professionals.

My friend's wife herr in Japan entered a mental facility due to her schizophrenia. She never had a bad experience and was treated well even when she had outbursts.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

daito_hakToday 09:22 am JSTAnother sign of how Japan is an advanced and civilized country I guess....

I just love it that the usual nationalists and Japan apologists don't rush to their keyboard on that one in order to explain that it's us who don't get the Japanese culture.

It has nothing to do with most posters' knowledge or experience with Japanese culture. It has to do with most posters lack of knowledge or experience with people with bi-polar disorder. I worked with such patients years ago and I can tell you that if you've never dealt with it first hand, you have no idea why restraints may be necessary. Not saying the hospital is not at fault for anything in this article, but that the family is not taking any legal action against them is telling, as the family knows better than anyone the 27 year old's condition. Bi-Polar Disorder is treated with very powerful medication, and while taken, many patients can function perfectly fine. The problem arises when for some reason the meds are not being taken, as the patient begins a slow process of relapse. If people around him are not aware of his condition and meds, they will not know what is happening. Eventually it often leads to psychosis, what the article describes as "losing touch with reality such as screaming and running around". In many cases it leads to situations where the patient or others can be or are harmed. I have dealt with such situations as well. This has nothing to do with nationalism or apologists, mental illness exists in every country and culture.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

As terrible as the death was and with the hope that some procedures might change from this tragedy, why on Earth was a mentally ill person allowed to teach English to presumably children? This is far and away the more disturbing aspect of this case. How many other mentally disturbed English teachers are currently in close proximity to children?

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

solitary confinement for long periods of time is considered a form of torture, and thus against human rights, but even THAT is better than 96 days of restraint. That amount of restraint should be called out for what it is:  a form of inhumane torture.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Restraint is illegal in many countries. Mental health care in Japan is in the Dark Ages.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

.I wish a foreign association would sue the hospital

Good luck with that. In America or Europe, lawyers would be calling incessantly, or even knocking on the door to sign up a case like this one. In Japan you can knock on the door of every law office in town, and none of them would take this case.

One of my kids was attending a Japanese daycare, and was injured by a staff member. The injury resulted in more than two months of hospitalization, a fair amount of pain to our child, not to mention a lot of lost work. The daycare admitted that the injury occurred on their premises, and apologized, and that was the end of it. We contacted lawyers, none of them were willing to sue, they said that we had no chance of winning. We were not compensated for the medical expenses, or the lost work.

Another person who attended the same day care came to pick up her son, and found police cars parked in front. Her child had died at the daycare, having been placed in a back room because he was crying. He was not checked on, and when he was found not breathing, the staff called the ambulance. No one ever bothered to call his parents, they didn't know he had died until his mother came to get him.

The doctor ruled the case as SIDS, and though the daycare violated the law by putting the child in an unattended room, and putting him to sleep on his belly, there was no punishment. No lawyer was willing to sue the daycare, and they continue to run as they always have. The daycare is called Kids Square, in case you want to know. It is a politically-connected company, and many politicians send their children there.

If you want to live and work in Japan, you have to understand that people here have little recourse when it comes to things like healthcare or childcare.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Argue about this and that, he was restrained for 10 days, soiling himself being fed by others. His family were not able to visit him. He died. Do that to an animal in any developed country- jail time. The UN have made reports about this barbaric system year after year. So it bashing a culture to point out practices that are repugnant?

Try to restrain me when I'm lucid and sadly I give you a reason to restrain me.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Don't these hospitals have private rooms they can lock patients in that would at least allow them the freedom to move around? Strapping someone to a bed and leaving them there cannot be described as "care", it's more like torture. The doctors involved should lose their medical licenses.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Hmmm.... restraining someone like this (shackl1ed to a bed) until they calm down seems akin to hitting a sobbing child until they stop crying. "Stop crying! smack" "Why are you still crying?!? smack" The cure is worse than the original problem.

It seems obvioius that the correct course of action would be to restrain the person until they can have their medication, then remove the restraints once the meds take effect. Observe and adjust care as necessary. But, this would require effort on the part of the staff. Easier to just chain someone up and ignore them. It's particularly telling that the victim's family was not allowed to visit. I wonder why....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This is far and away the more disturbing aspect of this case. How many other mentally disturbed English teachers are currently in close proximity to children? probably far less than mentally disturbed Japanese teachers in close proximity to these same children, One just this week told his student to jump from a window.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

This is far and away the more disturbing aspect of this case. How many other mentally disturbed English teachers are currently in close proximity to children? another J teacher was just sentenced yesterday to 3 yrs in prison for sexual abuse and child pornography charges. the list goes on.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

@maria i was arrested for crossing the road and tied to a metal chair in pain for 7 hours. my point is that in japan, the methods used are sometimes too harsh. we all know from other threads about illegal immigrants treatment here. just don't do anything wrong.

@bertie i also lost two school mates to drugs prescribed as opposed to lengthy counselling which is expensive and time consuming.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I wanted to ignore this argument (admittedly, it sounds like something went horribly wrong) but it's turning into an unjustified attack on Japanese mental health care in general.

I was in a secure mental hospital for seven months, in Kyushu, after I was hit by a car and was brain-damaged.

I was a middle-grade patient, so I got to see how both the "best" and the "worst" patients were treated.

It was all superb. Staff were incredibly patient (with bed-wetters, food-throwers etc.) and genuinely kind.

It would be a great shame if this one incident were allowed to colour people's view of Japanese mental health care.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

It has to do with most posters lack of knowledge or experience with people with bi-polar disorder.

I have lots of experience, I am a Registered Mental Health Nurse. It is not acceptable to restrain patients, the only time it is allowed is when the patient is at immediate risk of harm to themselves and others, then they are taken to a safe place where they can't hurt themselves or others. It is totally unacceptable, and illegal in the UK, to restrain a person for longer than a few minutes.

The mental health care I am aware of in Japan is like something from the 1950s.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Japanese 'mental hospitals' are still very, VERY much like the asylums of the early 1900s in the West; patients are locked in and forgotten about by ashamed family members, and abused by staff while punished instead of being treated and possibly rehabilitated. There's an old one not far from where I live, I found out to my chagrin later (they don't advertise that in the listing) after hearing moaning late at night all the time, and it is truly something out of American Horror Story.

Sadly, instead of this incident forcing Japan to take a look at its practices, we'll see the usual knee-jerk, "You're attacking our culture" reaction and defense of said practices, much like when every year you hear of numerous people dying in custody after being locked up in immigration waiting deportation. Nothing will change -- they'll just get more defensive as the family of this unfortunate man get no answers except blame of the victim.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

smithinjapan.

And your experience is?

Mine is something totally different from what you are posting.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

From what I have read elsewhere, Kelly Savage loved Japan and had a blast during his time in japan, probably the best/most fulfilling 2 years in his life. This is a medical issue, not a cultural one.

Most definitely! I'm sure he was having a blast while being marginalized and as he was being tortured to death..!

"I just love it that the usual nationalists and Japan apologists don't rush to their keyboard on that one in order to explain that it's us who don't get the Japanese culture."

I wish Japan-bashers had done the same. Unfortunately looking at your post (and many others) they haven't.

Seriously? You are saying that? Is there no end to pulling the victim card at ANY rightful criticism of this country? How low is your collective self-esteem?

You've got medical professionals of Japan also against this barbaric treatment in the article above, but you get all defensive because some foreigners are duly calling it out, too.

If this happened to a tourist/visitor in any developed country, you would have throngs of people upset about it too. Whether those people where from Japan, Tahiti or Guatemala are of no consequence. And, as in the article above, you would have medical professionals calling it what it is; barbaric and inappropriate. But only in Japan, there's always.. ALWAYS.. someone with the most bizarre reasoning to get in the way of progress.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

A kiwi gets restrained in a mental institution and carks it in Japan and an Aussie gets shot by a cop when calling for assistance in Minnesota. Not a good week for ex-pat Antipodeans

Reminds me of one winter when I was trapped in a home for dementia patients in the mountains near Niigata.

We were just visiting, and my wife said I could go and wait in the car while she talked to some staff. So I went.

First I could not operate the elevators which needed a code and then multiple buttons to be able to go down. A kind 'patient' eventually showed me how to use it!!! Then at the front door the staff refused to open it with their remote control from their office because I was not allowed to go out. This was all quite infuriating. Starting a fire did cross my mind but then I thought that I really would be restrained.

How did I get out? After an hour I got fed up with wearing the mandatory mask near the entrance - winter and the usual dread of flu. I refused to put it back on when staff told me I had to, so they escorted me out.

I was one of the lucky ones.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

@smith

"moaning at night" is completely normal and something you get used to very quickly.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

if you start to go nuts perhaps going home would be better

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@nakanoguy01

"for the most part, i think what the hospital did was by the book and appropriate for this situation."

except for the part where he died

7 ( +8 / -1 )

R.I.P

Oh oh this doesn't sound good for a country more fixated on it's image abroad especially in this

case New Zealand.

I won't be surprised if the local media won't mentioned at all about this case and if they did

just a flash through.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I suspect that he was given special consideration because he had a brother here.

That kind of thing appeared to have special weight with the JET people, at least, when I applied....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

RIP

From the information provided by nakanoguy, this sounds like a perfect storm of difficult circumstances. The article doesn't mention DVT, which is not that well understood anyway, but it makes any much sense to me any imaginings I have as an amateur about people who are being restrained. DVT was blamed for killing a number of people sheltering in vehicles after the quake in Kumamoto last year.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If a mentally ill patient is a danger to others he should be isolated. If a patient is a danger to him or her self they should be restrained for short periods of time and medicated at other times, as well as being isolated. Restraining someone for weeks or even months is an abuse of human rights regardless of the severity of their mental illness. As I stated above, it is just 'set and forget'. These mental health facilities must be seriously understaffed and tying patients into beds is their only option.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Why is no one demanding JET tighten up their act?

Because it wasn't JET that sadistically tied him to a bed and ignored his pleas for help. You have no evidence that his prior condition was not declared to his employer.

Also, the story focuses more-so on the unnecessary and unethical practice of restraining patients in Japan - not the screening processes for foreigners...

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Hello everyone. I am one of the JETs that knew Kelly before his passing. As his story gets more traction, the Savage family and Prof. Hasegawa have begun a petition to Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, demanding it outlaw the use of long-term restraints in psychiatric care. If what happened to Kelly shocked and horrified you as much as did us, please take the time to sign and share the petition.

https://www.change.org/p/内閣総理大臣-安倍晋三-end-long-term-restraint-in-psychiatric-care-精神科医療における身体拘束の状況の改善を求める/naftaExp1/real_control?recruiter=1823765&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=share_petition&utm_content=nafta_share_post_copy_en_5%3Areal_control

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Perhaps this is one reason why so many people are hesitant to seek care for mental health issues..... 96 hours tied to a bed

Sam, that was 96days not hours!.............

Folks, there is ZERO bashing going on here that isn't DESREVED big time, average 96days restrained OMFG!  Clearly this is massive abuse instead lieu of actual care!!

I think any reasonable person can understand the need for short term/time restraint but Japan has this way beyond horribly wrong, utterly indefensible!

And anyone who thinks they might be losing it here, IF you have a fall back country to go to & can be helped it is likely BEST to do so. Once locked up in Japan in one of these wards it can be extremely hard to get out, even visitors it seems from some posts.....INSANE literally.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@Goodlucktoyou:

Goodness me. My sympathies. That does sound terrible.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

They also do this in nursing homes with dementia patients. Seen it with my own eyes.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

The policy of restraint needs a government review. Its overused and used on death row, prison inmates, police detention centers, mentally ill patients, old people, disabled people.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

@ OssanAmerica

Not saying the hospital is not at fault for anything in this article, but that the family is not taking any legal action against them is telling, as the family knows better than anyone the 27 year old's condition.

Unlike the USA and to a lessor extent Japan, NZ is a non-litigious country. Despite this, I daresay the family considered legal action but were advised that their chances of success were low. Remember that the hospital is basically refusing to release relevant information and what do you know of other wrongful death cases in Japan. Ever seen a non-Japanese person win a wrongful death suit here? Waste of time, waste of money. Better to take the high road and use that goodwill try to force through some meaningful change to their antiquated mental health system, as the family are indeed doing.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Goodlucktoyou:

Goodness me. My sympathies. That does sound terrible.

and a bit far fetched even for Japan.

I think there's much more to this story than he has let on

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

I also don't think we got the full story.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

That's weird, I posted about the JET programme's Certificate of Health and support for mental health isses and it got removed.

It appears that once a moderator starts obsessing about one's post they start removing all of them.

What was wrong with this?

--

In order to join a JET program, you have to fill in a "JET Programme Certificate of Health"

The application clearly states, "Any false information, or any medical conditions withheld will lead to your application being disqualified".

One of the questions in the English version is, "Have you ever been treated for any mental, emotional, nervous or eating disorders or for depression?"

Clearly stated is, "You must answer Yes to this question if you have been treated for any of the above at any time in your life ... This [doctor's] letter should clearly state whether you are fit for life in Japan as an ALT or CIR". However, it also says that, "past physical or mental illness will not disqualify you from the JET Programme, but false information or withholding of information will do".

I wonder how he got through having been recenty sectioned for violent behavior beforehand in NZ.

Perhaps that is why the family is not suing?

It seems the JET Programme itself provides mental health counselling assistance and many local groups have additional support. Apart from the nature of his illness, I wonder how he slipped through the safety net.

Why is no one demanding JET tighten up their act?

Being in such a foreign land and cut off from everything familiar is hard enough for many mentally healthy individuals. I'm thinking of JETs who get sent off to distant/rural schools and many mature immigrant.

I'd love to know the name of the Thomson Reuters correpondence because "Appeal-to-Authority" seems to be their middle name. They do the same in the comfort women press releases and they do the same here.

"A Japanese campaign group whose members include lawyers and academics".

Please name it.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Things like this gets an uproar. If only job opportunities in their respective countries were better, nobody would ever be adventurous to leave their homelands. A clean bill of health even if JEmbassies require each applicant, won't assure of a mentally and emotionally healthy individual enough to cope living in a different environ and culture. And as some insinuate, he could have had some previous mental health issues. I can understand the restraining since not doing so would mean an almost one on one supervision which they can't afford due to being under staff. A boy who temper tantrum require much effort. How much more an adult male! Sometimes it's just easy to make an uproar!

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

If this was one isolated incident, I'd be inclined to chalk it up to staff either not educated in the treatment of psychiatric patients, or simple incompetence.

But an average of 96 days in constant restraint for patients deemed requiring it is unacceptable. That is medieval and would never be tolerated in a modern hospital system in most developed countries.

This needs to change and it needs to change yesterday.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I think many of you have forgotten. Japan is an Asian country.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Really interesting post lucabrasi, thanks for sharing. 

@agentX, am not Japanese so no "your collective self-esteem' bs mate. It's not about being pro-anti japan (am neither) but about not putting the boot in or singling out any particular country or profession. Physical/chemical restraint of patients is and has always been a massive issue, in Japan and abroad. There is not ONE single country that NEVER uses some form of restraint (physical or chemical) on their mental health patients. It's not a Japan vs the rest of the world thing, it's a medical, global issue. Have worked all my life in HC/pharma industry (including at/with psychiatric hospitals) and I have had numerous convos with docs about sedative drugs vs physical restraint, on what type of patients, what are the risks etc. Physical restraint is sometimes necessary, how/for how long, in what conditions etc are the $1M questions. Plus it's very difficult to collect reliable data/info from hospitals, for obvious reasons, so no one exactly knows who does what.

Again, I think this is a very regrettable yet isolated incident and I sincerely hope the medical profession, in japan and abroad, looks into this and learn from it. I would like to believe that the level of care lucabrasi and a couple of other posters describe is the norm rather than the exception. 

2 articles I found interesting, first one about this case, 2nd one about the issue itself

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11889661

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-05/mental-health-patients-still-being-strapped-down-in-australia/8497646

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@clemeza. how about we swap places and you enjoy my experience.

i care for my partners mother who has stage 3 dementia. luckily she has a little money. private room. i also cared for my ex partners mother, she had no money. there was a room with 6 cages. the smell was terrible. all she wanted to to was escape. with the ageing population, we should be investing in old peoples care, child poverty. not giving money to ukraine or wherever.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Not sure why they are allowing the mentally ill into the country, enough here already. Nevertheless, all English teachers should be required to undergo examination to ensure they are not also mentally ill or dangerous around children and will be aggressively bringing this up with my local MP here. Completely unacceptable

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Is that 96-day figure correct? The article at the link below lists 68 hours as the average length of interventions by mechanical restraint and 98 hours for interventions by seclusion. The article is a little old, and the data source may be a narrow sample of hospitals, but it seems quite out of whack with the 96-day figure in the article.

http://www.cfmhas.org.uk/assets/Lepping-2010-seclusion.pdf

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@clemeza. how about we swap places and you enjoy my experience.

i care for my partners mother who has stage 3 dementia. luckily she has a little money. private room. i also cared for my ex partners mother, she had no money. there was a room with 6 cages. the smell was terrible. all she wanted to to was escape. with the ageing population, we should be investing in old peoples care, child poverty. not giving money to ukraine or wherever.

goodlucktoyou - I was referring to your bogus story about being shackled 7 hours for jaywalking, not whatever the hell this is meant to be

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

This just popped up on my feed. Looks like Japan isn't alone after all.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jul/20/thousands-of-mental-health-patients-spend-years-on-secure-wards-nhs?CMP=twt_gu

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Goldorak

But "locked in" a facility, and being restrained to a bed for days on end is not the same thing. It's actually completely different. One sounds abusive, the other...well just not perfect.

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Rest in peace. Condolences to the family. I can't begin to imagine the pain and misery he went through. If anybody knows for sure, why did he start taking new meds? Was there some reason he switched?

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There was a JET in my ken who apparently had schizophrenia in his family and didn't know he was affected, until one day when he decided to stand on his desk in the middle of the teacher's room and holler obscenities. When the EMTs and cops were called, he made a go at them with some scissors. He got dumped off in some loony bin for the criminally insane, and as no airline would let him on a flight and his folks couldn't afford a quarter million bucks for a charter medivac flight, he remained in there for quite a long time. Very sad.

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That's pretty frightening, Capt.

No insurance would cover that? Looks like the system has some glaring gaps in it.

Looking into the instances and nature of mental health issues within foreigners in Japan would make an interesting research paper.

Mental health in cross-cultural relationship is another very difficult area, going both ways.

How to screen?

It's definitely a "something needs to be done about" scenario. What damage or impression upon the children would it have?

A lot of school are pretty lax to who they hire, especially if someone drops out at short notice.

And then there are the schools who encourate relationships between teachers/JETs and students as way of "cementing" the bond and keeping them. Fact.

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It appears the stigma is not just confined to Japan. Witness use of words like "nuts" and "loony bin" used by international posters. Not to mention dreadful sniping at posters who have actually experienced issues or been restrained.

Wonder if it was cancer or any other illness, would there be such flippancy and sneering?

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It would depends if they were smokers or not.

Try Googling "Mad Pride". Although I've avoided using such term, I am more concerned about screening and mental health support for JETs, not every nut is belongs to the 'politically correct police'.

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Once someone has a mental issue as opposed to a physical disease I've seen for myself just how fast that individual gets institutionalised with all the potential abuses that may occur.

Attitudes to mental health certainly need to change....,

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the family considered legal action but were advised that their chances of success were low. 

The chance of success are low because the judicial system is stuck in the same dark age this hospital seems to operate, protection of the clan is Japan version of the Justice... how could a fair justice not sanction such of inhumane practices 10 days restraint without allowing him to walk time to time, leading to the death of a patient ?

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But "locked in" a facility, and being restrained to a bed for days on end is not the same thing. It's actually completely different. One sounds abusive, the other...well just not perfect.

Completely agree. But the articles I have posted do also mention physical restraint, even the NHS one. 

Too many patients who become agitated are then physically restrained, often because poorly trained carers do not know what else to do.

Mental health is a global health issue and has to be tackled globally. Not even talking about countries like Russia or SEA where mental health patients are systematically caged/chained.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

This just popped up on my feed. Looks like Japan isn't alone after all.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jul/20/thousands-of-mental-health-patients-spend-years-on-secure-wards-nhs?CMP=twt_gu

Not the same thing. Being restrained and being on a secure, ie locked, ward are two completely different things. Secure wards are for those deatined under the Mental Health Act, involuntarily in hospital due to being seen as a danger to themselves or others. Many people in mental health units are voluntary patinets.

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As usual.... this barbaric treatment is a result of Japan's rigid culture. One where where "Normal" is one that adheres to the group's norms. Anyone that falls outside of the "Normal" and acceptable social rules, can and will be treated harshly with with little or no remorse or backlash. If it were not for heavy Western influence over the years Japan would today probably be considered one of the coldest and uncaring countries on Earth. Fixing this problem is what is needed.... padded cells are needed and the amount of time one would have to spend in one needs to be re-examined. Another rung in the Japanese ladder to acceptable levels of humanity.

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Look, I get the "every chance to denigrate Japan" line ... and even "we cured Japan with WWII" line (although I don't agree with it) but this is someone in charge of children who was acting violently and abusively and threatening people with scissors.

Is that acceptable behavior?

Japan existed at peace with itself and others for 250 years before the US kicked in its front doors and started to threat it.

Have you ever been to Japan?

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

I cried and wrote a long emotional post then accidentally deleted the best part, so I gave up on it. Here goes with this new one...

The focus should be on JET bureaucrats and the J government which will surely be responsible enough to pay the family a deserved compensation.

It is OK to recover and move abroad and teach children. The issue in my mind is support, not just medication- which was unfortunately stopped.

How many of us long-timers decide to stay on when maybe it was time to go home? A lot I think. Let's realise the need for support- over and above family. Friends are vital ( not Japanese friends, but same-nation ones or commonwealth ones). Make an effort to accept others who are trying to live over here. It is normal that that compatriot of yours, however strange or irritating he/she may be, wants to hang out and become friends. Make the effort people. Don't slander, back-stab, ridicule someone just because you think they are a weirdo or back home loser. It's just pathetic.  No matter how cool or gorgeous or clever you feel you yourself are, understand now that the tables could one day be turned to strap YOU down. Effects of isolation, loneliness, or depression creep up slow enough to catch us all unguarded and unprepared.

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MlodinowJuly 20 01:40 pm JST@ OssanAmerica

Not saying the hospital is not at fault for anything in this article, but that the family is not taking any legal action against them is telling, as the family knows better than anyone the 27 year old's condition.

Unlike the USA and to a lessor extent Japan, NZ is a non-litigious country. Despite this, I daresay the family considered legal action but were advised that their chances of success were low. Remember that the hospital is basically refusing to release relevant information and what do you know of other wrongful death cases in Japan.

Speculation on your part. Maybe right, maybe not. Just as my comment is also speculation. My point was that there are indeed instances in the care of the mentally ill where restraints may be called for. And that it has nothing to do with "nationalism" or whatever.

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LudditeJuly 20 12:04 pm JSTIt has to do with most posters lack of knowledge or experience with people with bi-polar disorder.

I have lots of experience, I am a Registered Mental Health Nurse. It is not acceptable to restrain patients,

And you didn't know that this was common practice in Japan until you read this article?

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Japan existed at peace with itself and others for 250 years before the US kicked in its front doors and started to threat it. LOL Japanese were attacking and slaughtering each other centuries prior to the US or foreigners came along.

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