After shootings, states rethink mental health cuts

by Thomas Beaumont

(AP)—Dozens of states have slashed spending on mental health care over the last four years, either because of the recession's toll on revenue or a new zeal to shrink government.

But that trend may be heading for a U-turn in 2013 after last year's shooting rampages by two mentally disturbed gunmen.

The reversal is especially jarring in statehouses dominated by conservative Republicans, who aggressively cut welfare programs but now find themselves caught in a crosscurrent of pressures involving , public safety and health care for millions of disadvantaged Americans.

Shelley Chandler is executive director of the Iowa Alliance of Community Providers. She says lawmakers in some states have begun to recognize that their cuts "may have gone too deep."

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Mental health woes grow while spending declines

Jul 15, 2010

As the current global economic crisis drives up the demand for mental health care services, cash-strapped agencies are slashing mental health budgets, according to a new Brandeis University study out this month in the International Jo ...

US shooting revives debate over mental health care

Dec 20, 2012

The deadly US shooting rampage last week has revived debate about access to mental health care—a tough issue as state funds dry up and laws make it difficult to treat people against their will.

Recommended for you

Study examines effect of hospital switch to for-profit status

23 minutes ago

Hospital conversion from nonprofit to for-profit status in the 2000s was associated with better subsequent financial health but had no relationship to the quality of care delivered, mortality rates, or the proportion of poor ...

Hospital acquisitions leading to increased patient costs

23 minutes ago

The trend of hospitals consolidating medical groups and physician practices in an effort to improve the coordination of patient care is backfiring and increasing the cost of patient care, according to a new study led by the ...

User comments