Factors that explain how policy makers distribute resources to mental health services

Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, University of Chicago, 7230 Arbor Drive, Tinley Park, IL 60477, USA.
Psychiatric Services (Impact Factor: 1.99). 05/2003; 54(4):501-7. DOI: 10.1176/
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Advocates hope to influence the resource allocation decisions of legislators and other policy makers to capture more resources for mental health programs. Findings from social psychological research suggest factors that, if pursued, may improve advocacy efforts. In particular, allocation decisions are affected by policy makers' perceptions of the scarcity of resources, effectiveness of specific programs, needs of people who have problems that are served by these programs, and extent of personal responsibility for these problems. These perceptions are further influenced by political ideology. Conservatives are motivated by a tendency to punish persons who are perceived as having personal responsibility for their problems by withholding resources, whereas liberals are likely to avoid tough allocation decisions. Moreover, these perceptions are affected by political accountability, that is, whether politicians perceive that their constituents will closely monitor their decisions. Just as the quality of clinical interventions improves when informed by basic research on human behavior, the efforts of mental health advocates will be advanced when they understand the psychological forces that affect policy makers' decisions about resources.

  • Source
    • "). Corrigan and Watson have also emphasized the impact of perceptions of personal responsibility in making resource allocation decisions, which our participants reflected in their calls to ''handle it [mental illness]'' (Corrigan and Watson 2003). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Insurance coverage for mental health services has historically lagged behind other types of health services. We used a simulation exercise in which groups of laypersons deliberate about healthcare tradeoffs. Groups deciding for their "community" were more likely to select mental health coverage than individuals. Individual prioritization of mental health coverage, however, increased after group discussion. Participants discussed: value, cost and perceived need for mental health coverage, moral hazard and community benefit. A deliberative exercise in priority-setting led a significant proportion of persons to reconsider decisions about coverage for mental health services. Deliberations illustrated public-spiritedness, stigma and significant polarity of views.
    Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research 03/2011; 39(3):158-69. DOI:10.1007/s10488-011-0341-4 · 3.44 Impact Factor
  • Source
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Outreach is a treatment modality for engaging underserved populations in health care. Nowhere is outreach more relevant than in delivering services to homeless persons with mental illness. Programs providing outreach to homeless people have been in existence for at least two decades and a craft has developed naturalistically. However, there has been insufficient formal examination of factors that influence the effectiveness of outreach and how it is actually performed. The authors present an in-depth examination of issues related to outreach to the homeless. They review different outreach modalities, the role of the individual clinician, and the art of teamwork. They also discuss external issues such as financing, access to housing, interactions with other professions, and working conditions. The authors conclude with a brief discussion concerning the application of outreach to populations other than homeless individuals with psychiatric disorders and suggest future directions for improving our understanding of this important modality.
    Journal of Psychiatric Practice 04/2004; 10(2):95-105. DOI:10.1097/00131746-200403000-00004 · 1.35 Impact Factor
Show more