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NCJ Number: 52047 Find in a Library
Title: METHODS OF ASSESSING MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH NEEDS FROM SOCIAL STATISTICS, PART 2 (FROM EVALUATING COMMUNITY MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES - PRINCIPLE AND PRACTICE, 1977, BY ISABEL DAVIDOFF ET AL - SEE NCJ-52043)
Author(s): R STEWART; L POASTER
Corporate Author: US Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare
Public Health Service
United States of America

US Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare
Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Admin
United States of America

National Institute of Mental Health
United States of America
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
National Institute of Mental Health
Rockville, MD 20857
US Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare
Rockville, MD 20852
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THREE METHODS OF ASSESSING NEEDS FROM SOCIAL STATISTICS WHICH HAVE PROVED VALUABLE FOR A SMALL COMMUNITY MENTAL HEALTH CENTER ARE DESCRIBED, AND THE STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES OF EACH METHOD ARE INDICATED.
Abstract: METHOD 1, CALLED 'VISUALLY IDENTIFYING NEEDS,' IDENTIFIES FACTORS REVEALED IN SOCIAL STATISTICS CONSIDERED TO CORRELATE WITH NEED FOR MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES. MAPS ARE DEVELOPED FOR THESE VARIABLES REPRESENTING DIFFERENT LEVELS (PERCENTAGES OR RATES) OF EACH FACTOR IN EACH GEOGRAPHIC AREA. WHEN THESE MAPS ARE TRANSFERRED ONTO TRANSPARENT PLASTIC SHEETS AND SUPERIMPOSED ON ONE ANOTHER, THEY SHOW GEOGRAPHIC CONCENTRATIONS OF APPARENT SERVICE NEEDS. UTILIZATION RATES CAN THEN BE RELATED TO AREAS OF HIGH RISK TO DETERMINE WHETHER A PROGRAM IS REACHING ITS TARGET POPULATION. LACK OF CONCENSUS ON SOCIOECONOMIC VARIABLES RELATED TO MENTAL ILLNESS AND DECIDING WHICH VARIABLES MAY MOST ACCURATELY PREDICT MENTAL HEALTH NEEDS ARE CONSIDERED THE MAIN PROBLEMS WITH THIS APPROACH. METHOD 2, CALLED 'IDENTIFYING THE RELATIVE AMOUNT OF NEED IN EACH CENSUS TRACT,' ASSUMES THAT SOCIAL STATISTICS ARE ACCURATE PREDICTORS OF LEVEL-OF-NEED, AND ASSIGNS TO EACH CENSUS TRACT A PERCENT OF THE TOTAL NEEDS OF THE GEOGRAPHIC AREA. THIS METHOD TAKES THE LEVEL OF NEED IDENTIFIED BY THE PREVIOUS METHOD FOR EACH CENSUS TRACT AND MULTIPLIES THE LEVEL OF NEED BY THE NUMBER OF PERSONS IN THE TRACT. THIS METHOD IS CONSIDERED TO MEET WITH THE SAME PROBLEMS AS THE PREVIOUS METHOD. METHOD 3, 'IDENTIFYING NEEDS IN ABSOLUTE NUMBERS,' ASCERTAINS THE ABSOLUTE NUMBER OF PERSONS SUFFERING FROM A SPECIFIC DISORDER. IN USING THIS METHOD, AS MUCH DATA AS POSSIBLE MUST BE GATHERED, AND THEN AN EDUCATED GUESS MUST BE MADE. FOUR EXAMPLES OF THE USE OF THIS METHOD, EMPLOYING SOCIAL STATISTICS DIFFERENTLY, ARE PROVIDED. REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (RCB)
Index Term(s): Data collections; Evaluation; Mental disorders; Needs assessment; Techniques; Treatment
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=52047

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