Symposium on
Mental Health and
Public Policy

January 12, 2002


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Mental illness is the most prevalent health problem in America. The statistics are staggering:

  • One in ten children and adolescents in the United States suffers from mental illness. (U.S. Surgeon General)
  • Four in ten leading causes of disability in the U.S. result from mental disorders. (World Health Organization)
  • In 1997, 3,430 Californians committed suicide. (Little Hoover Commission)

It is estimated that 1.3 million adults in California have a serious mental illness and three-quarters of a million children and adolescents have a serious emotional disturbance or mental illness.

This symposium inaugurates an interdisciplinary program to explore, develop, and communicate scholarship on mental illness. Assembling outstanding experts from a variety of disciplines, the event seeks to promote a greater understanding of mental illness and evaluate the status of care and treatment for those afflicted. It launches a continuing effort to link medical advances to public policy solutions in mental health care.

Institute of Governmental Studies, UC Berkeley

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