Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 32, Issue 2, pp 135–148 | Cite as

Supported housing for the mentally ill elderly: Implementation and consumer choice

  • Sung Sil Lee Sohng


The development of innovative alternatives to nursing homes is critical, especially in the context of OBRA mandates and the growing geriatric population. This article examines the experience of one urban county in Washington State in providing supported housing for the OBRA-affected mentally ill elderly. The significance of this demonstration project is its “bold” new approach in applying this emerging model to the elderly. It illustrates the perspectives and experience of both consumers and care-givers in implementing the supported housing approach, and the tensions between consumer preferences and staff, organizational and funding constraints.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Action Committee to Implement the Mental Health Recommendations of the 1981 White House Conference on Aging.Mental health services for the elderly: Report on a survey of community mental health center, Vol. II. Washington, DC., 1984.Google Scholar
  2. Blanch, A., Carling, P., & Ridgway, P. Normal housing with specialized support: A psychiatric rehabilitation approach to living in the community.Rehabilitation Psychology, 33 (1), 1988, 47–55.Google Scholar
  3. Butler, R., & Lewis, M.Aging and mental health. St. Louis: C.V. Mosby, 1982.Google Scholar
  4. Carling, P. Major mental illness, housing and supports: The promise of community integration.American Psychologist, 45, 1990, 969–975.Google Scholar
  5. Fisher, W., Geller, J., Pearsall, D., Simon, L., & Wirth-Cauchon, J. A continuum of services for the deinstitutionalized, chronically mentally ill elderly.Administration and Policy in Mental Health, 18 (6), 1991, 397–410.Google Scholar
  6. Freiman, M., Arons, B., Goldman, H., & Burns, B. Nursing home reform and the mentally ill.Health Affairs, 48, 1990 (Winter), 47–60.Google Scholar
  7. Government Accounting Office.The Elderly remain in need of mental health services. Publication GAO/HRD 82–112, 1982. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office.Google Scholar
  8. ——.Medicaid: Addressing the needs of mentally retarded nursing home residents. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1987.Google Scholar
  9. Health Care Financing Administration. Medicaid program: Conditions for Intermediate Care Facilities for the mentally retarded (Final rule).Federal Register, 1988, p. 20448.Google Scholar
  10. --. Proposed rule: Medicare and Medicaid programs: Preadmission screening and annual resident review.Federal Register, March 23, 1990, pp. 10851–10881.Google Scholar
  11. Hogan, M., & Carling, P. Normal housing: A key element of a supported housing approach for people with psychiatric disabilities.Community Mental Health Journal, 28 (3), 1992, 215–225.Google Scholar
  12. Institute of Medicine.Improving the quality of care in nursing homes. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1986.Google Scholar
  13. Mitchell, D., & Braddock, D. Historical and contemporary issues in nursing home reform.Mental Retardation, 28 (4), 1990, 201–210.Google Scholar
  14. National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors.Position statement on housing and support for people with long-term mental illness. Alexandria, VA: Author, 1987.Google Scholar
  15. National Institute of Mental Health.Guidelines for meeting the housing needs of people with psychiatric disabilities. Rockville, MD: Author, 1987.Google Scholar
  16. Pepper, B., & Rygliewicz, H. The role of the state hospital: A new mandate for a new era.Psychiatric Quarterly, 57, 1985, 230–251.Google Scholar
  17. Ridgway, P., & Zipple, A. The paradigm shift in residential services: From the linear continuum to supported housing approaches.Psychosocial Rehabilitation Journal, 13 (4), 1990, 11–31.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sung Sil Lee Sohng
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Washington School of Social WorkSeattle

Personalised recommendations