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Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill

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Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill
Ed Long
HSM/210

Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill How did deinstitutionalization affect New York State? After the closing of mental institutions in 1954 mental patients were discharged in the community to live normal and productive lives. At the time the number of patients released overwhelmed community services. From the time deinstitutionalization started to present day, patients being released into the community, it was and still is being opposed. Some of the affects that deinstitutionalization has on the community is it evokes local fear, diminishes personal security and higher local and state budgets. When patients were released into the community they were not prepared to serve the number of patients released therefore making a lot of them homeless, in prison and were warehoused in a different way in single- room occupancy hotels or shelters. On average these people die 20 to 25 years earlier than the general population. There have been several studies done since the start of deinstitutionalization to show the serious public health problem. Some of the natural causes of death, but preventable were cardiovascular disease, complications from diabetes and metabolic syndrome, respiratory disease due to heavy smoking, and infections including HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. Last but not least, deinstitutionalization was often linked with community's reaction and negative attitudes, prejudice, stereotypes, stigma and discrimination against the community placement of persons with serious mental illness (Matschinger and Angermeyer 2004).

Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill
Reference Page
Hochbaum, C. H. (2002). Deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill in new york state: An examination of the strategy of co-optation (Order No. 3061110). Available from ProQuest...

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