A continuum of services for the deinstitutionalized, chronically mentally ill elderly

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Mental Health Services; Health Services for the Aged; Aged


Health Services Research | Mental and Social Health | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology


Under a 1978 federal court consent decree, Massachusetts developed a comprehensive system of community based residential and non-residential services to minimize the utilization of one of its state hospitals. This paper describes the service system and its impact on the use of the state hospital by the chronically mentally ill elderly. The findings show that the development of a continuum of services can all but eliminate the use of the state hospital by psychiogeriatric patients. The authors suggest consideration be given to many of the system's elements in planning future services for this population.

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Citation: Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, Volume 18, Number 6, 397-410, DOI: 10.1007/BF00707313