Memorial set up at site of murder suicide
Updated: Tuesday, July 1 2014, 11:13 PM EDT
EAST GREENBUSH -- Experts hope Tuesday's murder-suicide by a mother of two children will shine a light on mental illness.
Police say Angela Mtambu used nitrogen to fill the room where she was sleeping with her two children, killing them all.
"There's a large mental health issue not only in this issue, but nationwide being under funded underserved and ppl dont lke to talk about it as a rule especially issues of suicide," said Dr. Tom Qualtere, a Psychiatrist with Schenectady Mental Health Associates.
Dr. Qualtere said he's seen an uptick lately in suicides or suicide attempts. Police said Mtambu was receiving help for her mental illness. She was recently released from a psychiatric facility and was being closely watched by her family.
"In a lot of cases, people dont have the support, there might not be the family support. I did happen to see some of the highlights and she did have family involvement, which is great. Often times that person is a ship sailing out there all alone," said Dr. Qualtere.
He hopes insurance policies will catch up with current practices to allow him to treat patients with the best available medicine.
Until then, he encourages family members and those with depressed loved ones to watch for warning signs. and use resources like the 24/7 Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-TALK.
"You have to reach out. By the nature of the beast they're not coming and saying 'help me I'm distraught, I want to kill myself'," said Dr. Qualtere. "This is when you rely on friends, family, third parties."