Program development for chronic mentally ill women is emerging in a climate where more general concerns relating to women's health and mental health are increasingly being examined. Although in the past the special needs of chronic mentally ill women have received scant attention in the professional literature, there is evidence today of a growing commitment to serving this population. The author traces the emergence and legitimation of three specific issues— bomelessness, skills training, and family planning—that reflect the complexity of program development for this population. As specific issues in service delivery to chronic mentally ill women come to the fore and move toward relevant solutions, we may anticipate a sharpening of planning concepts. Both male and female chronic mental patients stand to benefit from these developments.