Dangers Of Budget Cuts On Mental Health Care

1549 words - 6 pages

Continuing budget cuts on mental health care create negative and detrimental impacts on society due to increased improper care for mentally ill, public violence, and overcrowding in jails and emergency rooms. Origins, of mental health as people know it today, began in 1908. The movement initiated was known as “mental hygiene”, which was defined as referring to all things preserving mental health, including maintaining harmonious relation with others, and to participate in constructive changes in one’s social and physical environment (Bertolote 1). As a result of the current spending cuts approaching mental health care, proper treatment has declined drastically. The expanse of improper care to mentally ill peoples has elevated harmful threats of heightened public violence to society.
Funding for mental health care comes from various sources. States typically derive the larger amount of their funds from Medicaid and state general funds that are administered by state mental health authorities. In 2007, 46% of funding was through Medicaid, and 40% of funding was through state general funds (Honberg et al. 2). Overall, states consistently assemble their budget from state general funds, federal Medicaid, federal block grants, and private grants (Honberg et al. 3).
States obtain many services that fall under mental health care, and that treat the mentally ill population. These range from acute and long-term hospital treatment, to supportive housing. Other effective services utilized include crisis intervention teams, case management, Assertive Community Treatment programs, clinic services, and access to psychiatric medications (Honberg at al. 6). These services support the growing population of people living in the United States with acute to severe mental illnesses.
One in seventeen Americans obtain a deliberate mental illness, these illnesses include schizophrenia, major depression, and bipolar disorder. One in ten children in the United States currently acquires or possesses one of the previous disorders listed (Honberg et al. 1). The measure of poor mental health increases during times of recession and budget cuts by about 50% (Fisher 3). The consequences of living with mental illness are serious and can harm the one with the illness and pose a threat to people surrounding them. Both, adults and youth, living with mental illness involve themselves in frequent trips to emergency rooms, hospitalization, homelessness, loss of critical development years, overwhelming criminal justice entanglement and a numerous amount of premature deaths, whether it be suicide or murder (Honberg et al. 4). These all severely affect the individuals of society and build a hazard of creating danger in the community when potentially dangerous mentally ill people are not acquiring the attention they need. Amid the time the country needs a strong stand on mental health care, to ensure harmonious relations and progress in society, destructive cuts...

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