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Mental Health Services: Equity, Quality, and Constraints
Leon Eisenberg
Psychiatric Services 1978; doi:
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Harvard Medical School Boston, Massachusetts

American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

The current restrictions on resources for mental health care reflect political priorities rather than immutable economic forces, the author contends. He believes that despite the public cynicism about the motives of professionals who plead for additional resources for mental health, professionals have a continuing obligation to be advocates for patients and to lobby for universal access to effective services. In his view, the best use of resources would take three major programmatic thrusts: a full range of services for psychotic patients, consultation and collaboration with primary-practice physicians to enhance their skill in the management of psychiatric and psychosomatic problems, and comprehensive maternal and child health programs. He emphasizes the need for services for minority groups, who continue to bear a disproportionate health burden as reflected in longevity and mortality rates, and for increased funding for health research.

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