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State of Public Mental Health Care

Essay by   •  July 6, 2011  •  Essay  •  357 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,682 Views

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The state of public mental health care is deplorable in this country, a condition we continue to ignore while either incarcerating those with mental illness, offering them respite in inadequate and often abominable shelters, or all too typically by dismissing the problem as unsolvable. The mentally ill often comprise a large portion of the prison and homeless populations in this country, either from perpetrating minor crimes or from a lack of newly developed medications which might alleviate their condition enough to allow them to find employment and maintain a somewhat stable life. However, present laws regarding the mentally ill are often inadequate to ensure law enforcement has appropriate methods for dealing with their plight and in the richest nation in the world our medical insurance coverage for the mentally ill is minimal or not available. In Out of the Shadows, author E. Fuller Torrey reports, "we have 5.5 million Americans who suffer from acute mental illnesses. Of these approximately 159,000 are imprisoned mainly for minor crimes (shoplifting and such); 150,000 are homeless (about 1/3 of those who are homeless)".The state of public mental health care is deplorable in this country, a condition we continue to ignore while either incarcerating those with mental illness, offering them respite in inadequate and often abominable shelters, or all too typically by dismissing the problem as unsolvable. The mentally ill often comprise a large portion of the prison and homeless populations in this country, either from perpetrating minor crimes or from a lack of newly developed medications which might alleviate their condition enough to allow them to find employment and maintain a somewhat stable life. However, present laws regarding the mentally ill are often inadequate to ensure law enforcement has appropriate methods for dealing with their plight and in the richest nation in the world our medical insurance coverage for the mentally ill is minimal or not available. In Out of the Shadows, author E. Fuller Torrey reports, "we have 5.5 million Americans who suffer from acute mental illnesses. Of these approximately 159,000 are imprisoned mainly for minor crimes (shoplifting and such); 150,000 are homeless (about 1/3 of those who are homeless)".

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