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Article   |    
The Early Case for Caring for the Insane in General Hospitals
James Walkup
Psychiatric Services 1994; doi:
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Part of this research was conducted while the author was a National Institute of Mental Health postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research at Rutgers University. The author thanks the faculty of the institute, particularly Professor Gerald Grob, for support of his interest in general hospital psychiatry.

Rutgers University, Busch Campus, P. O. Box 819, Piscataway, New Jersey 08855

1994 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

The early argument for caring for the insane in general hospitals arose in the late 1800s in the context of criticisms of the asylum made by neurologists and some psychiatrists. The movement in support of general hospital psychiatry gained ground within psychiatry as the modernization of the general hospital made it a more attractive work site for physicians. By the second decade of this century, a newly independent discipline of hospital administration was providing an audience for psychiatrists who wanted to make the medical and financial case for the value of psychiatric care in the general hospital. Although in the 1930s only a fraction of general hospitals included a "department for mental patients," general hospital psychiatric treatment had ceased to be only a rhetorical or experimental concept and was fast becoming a practical program of treatment.

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