, Volume 62, Issue 3, pp 187-212

From hospital to community: Mental health policy in modern America

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Abstract

Between the 1940s and the 1970s mental health policy in the United States underwent a fundamental change as the legitimacy of institutional care was undermined by individuals and groups committed to an environmentalist psychodynamic and psychoanalytic psychiatry and to community-oriented programs. The consequences of the policy changes during these decades, however, differed in significant respects from the goals and intentions of those who favored innovation. This paper sketches out the dynamics of policy changes from World War II to the 1970s.

Gerald N. Grob is Henry E. Sigerist Professor of the History of Medicine, Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey.
The research for this paper was supported by NIMH grant MH-39030.