Policy Effects on Mental Health Status and Mental Health Care Disparities

  • Jeanne Miranda
  • Lonnie R. Snowden
  • Rupinder K. Legha


Policies that are directed at increasing access to mental health care for ethnic minority communities are needed. However, our review suggests that insurance alone is unlikely to result in substantial decreases in mental healthcare disparities for ethnic minority communities. We also consider disparities affecting sexual and gender minority populations, undocumented individuals, and African Americans and Latinos who are unjustly incarcerated. Comprehensive programs, such as collaborative care within health care settings, are needed to decrease these disparities. We propose that quality of care for healthcare organizations should include measures of disparities so that eliminating disparities would be considered an indicator of high-quality care. Mental health policy advocates should not only support policies that increase access to quality care for minorities, but also support anti-discrimination policies that are likely to have a major impact on the mental health status and mental healthcare use of minority populations.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeanne Miranda
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lonnie R. Snowden
    • 3
  • Rupinder K. Legha
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral SciencesUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Jonathan and Karin Fielding School of Public HealthUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Health Policy and Management Division, School of Public HealthUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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