I. Legislation and political context
HR 2646 Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, is a piece of legislation designed to reduce the barriers to mental health treatment for those who need it the most. HR 2646 begins a legislative process toward a mental health reform.
According to Mental Health America (2015), HR 2646 will empower parents and caregivers to seek out mental health treatment. It will promote alternatives to institutionalization and stabilize patients beyond the emergency room. HR 2646 will address the shortage of psychiatric beds and encourage greater use of criminal diversion programs. HR 2646 will reform the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. It will reach underserved and rural populations by fostering evidence-based care and advancing critical medical research. HR 2646 will improve the quality of community behavioral health services and reduce mental illness stigma in schools. It will integrate primary and behavioral care and increase physician volunteerism in community mental health facilities (Mental Health America, 2015).
HR 2646 was presented on Capitol Hill by Representatives Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas). It has since received a lot of…show more content… The Community Mental Health Act was the first piece of legislation that upended the mental health system. It dismantled mental asylums in favor of community mental health centers. However, the problem with the law was that not only was it signed in 1963, but it was never truly panned out (Dr. E. Fuller Torrey). “The programs were put together with the best of intentions,” “They were good ideas, just not carried out very well. All we did was empty the hospitals and release severe mentally ill people”. Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, founder of the Treatment Advocacy Center and executive director of the Stanley Medical Research Institute