In this opinion piece published by The Washington Post, Patrick Kennedy, the son of President John F. Kennedy, discusses the urgent need for improved mental health care in the United States. Drawing from his family’s legacy and his own experiences, Kennedy highlights the ongoing challenges in addressing mental health issues and emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive, nationwide approach to mental health care.
He advocates for increased investment in mental health resources, reducing stigma surrounding mental health, and fostering a more inclusive and equitable system. Kennedy’s article underscores the critical role that mental health plays in society and calls for a collective effort to create a brighter future for mental health care in America.
In the decades since the Community Mental Health Act was passed, Kennedy’s vision has been distorted beyond recognition. Institutions were emptied with no plan for patients and little money for community care.