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NFL Wide Receiver Tells Lawmakers About Mental Illness Stigma

Brandon Marshall, a wide receiver for the New York Jets, testified before a Senate Finance Committee hearing on mental health on Thursday.

Marshall is also the chairman and co-founder of Project 375, a nonprofit dedicating to reducing the stigma surrounding mental illness. Marshall was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder in 2011 after years of struggling with mental illness.
He said that stigma kept him from getting treatment earlier.  “The impact of stigma in the mental health community, and the critical need to make it easier for people to get assessed and treated and be able to lead a normal, fulfilled life,” Marshall said in prepared remarks.
Several committees have been examining mental health, a topic which lies in across different jurisdictions. The Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee passed a bipartisan bill last month. The Judiciary Committee has also worked on mental health legislation.
Many lawmakers have expressed a desire to address the Medicaid IMD exclusion, which lies in the Finance Committee’s jurisdiction. The exclusion limits certain reimbursements for mental health inpatients in the program. However, it costs somewhere between $40 and $80 billion to address.
The topic didn’t come up.