The National Mental Health Act (1946) became law on July 3, 1946. It established and provided funds for a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The Act made the mental health of the people a federal priority.
any great points in history to choose from as a topic. From Nazi Persecution of Psychologists to homosexuality being removed from being considered a diagnosed mental disorder. Although throughout history there have been many major milestones, 1946, US President Truman signed the National Mental Health Act which has changed the lives of mentally ill patients for that last 70 years. Although there is still plenty of room for improvements many are not aware of the way the mentally ill were treated in the past and present.
In early history, mental illness was considered a religious & personal problem. Often it was diagnosed as a demonic possession for not being religious enough and the mentally ill were treated with negative attitudes. This is what leads to even today’s fear and loathing of the mentally ill. Just like back then, many people do not understand the issue or how to deal with the problem. In the past patients were subjected to inhumane treatment, imprisonment in unhygienic confinement as well as subjected to non-consented experiments and more. So why was the National Mental Health Act created? World War II had just ended but controversial screenings for military recruits raised alarms and that things need to change. The act leads to the creation of NIMH, National Institute of Mental Health whose goal was to “transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and cure“. By 1955, the act leads to the Mental Health Study Act which leads to a nationwide call to study the economic problems of Mental Health which snowballed into actions of providing care and financial needs for those suffering from mental illness. Although Mental Health still has it’s stigmas, without this law’s creation, people would still be hiding away children with down syndrome or adults with dementia.
I always found the way people think to be interesting but, last year I saw the documentary, “A Friend Indeed: The Bill Sackter Story” and it broke my heart. It was the end of World War II and because he suffered from retardation his mother dropped him off a hospital when he was 7 and he never saw her again. Although he didn’t suffer any abuse at the hospital, he grew up there. It wasn’t until the age of 44 he was able to leave and have a life. Dealing with people with mental health issues is no easy task and a great burden to a family, so I don’t blame Bill’s mom for dropping him off but, if we still did that I wouldn’t know my friend Jen who is retarded.
 A Brief History of Mental Illness and the U.S. Mental Health Care System. (2017). Uniteforsight.org. Retrieved 6 June 2017, from http://www.uniteforsight.org/mental-health/module2