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How Do People in Poverty Get Mental Health Services?

Hardly.  And it’s getting harder.  The Affordable Care Act expanded Medicaid so that many people in poverty could gain access to mental health services.  But with proposed cuts to Medicaid, access would likely be cut off once again for the very people who need services most.  Mental disorders can be found in every economic class, but those on the lowest rungs are most affected by cuts to services.  Without insurance or significant income, help is beyond financial reach.

Here’s Ornella Mouketou’s story.

So what happens when people in poverty don’t have access to mental health services?  They often die prematurely.  According to Dennis Hobbs, CEO of the McClendon Center in Washington, D.C., the life expectancy for someone with severe mental illness is 25 years shorter than the general population!




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