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Healing the Broken MindTransforming America's Failed Mental Health System$
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Timothy A. Kelly

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814748121

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814748121.001.0001

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Transforming America’s Mental Health System

Transforming America’s Mental Health System

(p.139) 6 Transforming America’s Mental Health System
Healing the Broken Mind

Timothy A. Kelly

NYU Press

This chapter argues that resistance to change from forces that want to maintain the status quo—policy makers, providers, insurers, and even the consumers themselves—must be overcome if America's mental health services are to be truly transformed. It cites the case of Virginia to illustrate the level of resistance to change that will meet any proposal for meaningful reform. It discusses three important factors that can help achieve reforms in America's mental health service system: visionary leadership, economic imperative, and public outcry. Finally, it offers several recommendations, such as defining mental illness and serious mental illness in terms that make sense both clinically and from a public policy perspective; measuring actual clinical outcomes in the lives of those receiving mental health treatment; eradicating monopoly in favor of market competition; ensuring adequate insurance overage for mental health care; and building a collaborative mental health system.

Keywords:   mental health services, reforms, mental health, visionary leadership, mental illness, mental health treatment, monopoly, market competition, insurance overage, mental health care

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