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State Mental Health Cuts:
A National Crisis
A Report on America's Health Care System for Adults with Serious Mental Illness
Last Report Card
State Budget Cuts
March 11, 2009
The National Alliance on Mental
Illness (NAMI) issued a national report card today that gives
The report is a follow-up to a
NAMI report published three years ago to measure the progress of states in
achieving the goals of a presidential commission that called for transformation
of the mental health care system – which too often is fragmented, outmoded and
In the previous report,
See www.nami.org/grades2009 for the full report.
“Even slight progress is welcome,” said Verla Demopoulos, President, Board of Directors, NAMI Illinois. “But you can’t applaud too loud when a grade increases from an F to a D. There is a lot more work to be done. State budget cuts won’t help.
“We need now, more than ever,
to build momentum for change,” said Linda Virgil, Chair, NAMI Illinois.
We need leadership, political will and investment from Governor Quinn,
each and every Legislator, and other champions to preserve – and build on –
the modest progress
“An effective community mental health system that provides continuity of care, can keep individuals out of emergency rooms, hospitals, prisons and jails, and off the rolls of the homeless,” added Lora Thomas, Executive Director of NAMI Illinois. “Crisis creates opportunities; now, more than ever before, it’s time to support many of the most vulnerable among us.”
The NAMI Grading the States report card is based on 65 criteria, including access to medication, housing, family education, and support to National Guard members. It includes policy recommendations for federal and state leaders. State governments provided most of the information on which the grades are based.