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Welfare Reform on the Web (October 2007): Mental health services - overseas

Can system integration improve mental health outcomes for children and youth

E.M. Foster and others

Children and Youth Services Review, vol. 29, 2007, p. 1301-1319

US federal policy has identified the transformation of children's mental health services as a national priority. Among the forces shaping this effort has been the system of care philosophy. Key components of this philosophy include community-based alternatives to out-of-home placements, family involvement, cultural sensitivity and interagency cooperation. The Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and their Families Program established in 1992 has provided over $1 billion to 126 communities for the development of local systems of care. This study compares mental health outcomes for children receiving services in two funded system-of-care communities to those of children in two similar non-funded communities.

Guardianship of people with mental disorders

Y. Melamed, I. Doron and Shnitt

Social Science and Medicine, vol. 65, 2007, p. 1118-1123

Guardianship may be necessary to protect a person with a severe mental disorder who lacks capacity for self-care, but may also infringe the person's civil rights and autonomy. This study examined the process of appointing a guardian in 60 cases from a mental health centre in Israel, using patients' medical records and court appeals. Results suggest that guardians are appointed only in extreme cases, though alternative solutions are rarely sought, and that clear criteria for physicians when recom mending guardianship are lacking.

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