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Chronic Mental Health Disorders are a Leading Cause of Homelessness (Research Paper Sample)


THE paper was a research Analysis of two publications in the field of psychology that sought to draw a link between homelessness and mental health. the paper sought to highlight the contribution of diverse psychological conditions towards the advancement of homelessness. the paper also explored other factors including the socioeconomic predisposition of individuals and its overall effect in determining the quality of mental health services on offer . it offers useful RECOMMENDATIONS for consideration by policy makers as well.


Numerous research studies have attempted to draw the relation between homelessness and the advancement of diverse forms of mental illnesses. Martin (2015) is one such publication that explores the various dynamics around the manifestation of mental illnesses and the particular contribution of mental health towards its aggravation. The author note that there are numerous factors including the tough economic times occasioned by layoffs, pay cuts, and deepening poverty have been critical to the growth of the population of homeless persons in the United States (Martin, 2015). Crucially, the mental health factor, which has largely been overlooked, is another critical contributor to the growth of the homeless population in the country. For instance, research studies have indicated that chronic mental health disorders are a leading cause of homelessness in the country. According to Martin (2015), approximately one-third of the entire homeless population in the United States comprises people living with diverse mental illnesses. Therefore, the need for extensive interrogation of the interdependence between homelessness and mental health remains apparent.
Martin (2015) makes extensive scrutiny of the legislative and policy interventions to establish their input towards improving the life outcomes of the hundreds of thousands of homeless persons with various mental health complications. For instance, the author identifies the Affordable Care Act (ACA) as one of the policy interventions adopted by the United States government to improve the health outcomes of severely mentally ill patients. However, this policy intervention has done little to improve the fortunes of the homeless populations despite their susceptibility to various forms of mental illness. Martin (2015) posits that ACA has achieved numerous milestones towards improving the mental health of underprivileged populations in the United States. Some of the positive contributions of the legislation, include its reorganization of the medical health insurance, thus making it available to more people especially those with pre-existing conditions such as mental illnesses. However, while ACA has yielded tremendous benefits to the general population as noted by Martin (2015), the legislation has made little effort to offer solutions to homelessness amid mental illness.
Importantly, Martin (2015) also highlights the economy of homelessness and how it continues to worsen the lives of mentally challenged persons in the country. The publication suggests that while poverty is a critical facilitator of homelessness in the United States, other factors such as the absence of affordable housing and mental health problems are similarly worsening the situation. According to Martin (2015), up to 25% of the homeless people in the United States suffer from some form of mental health complication. In a cross-sectional study conducted in 25 cities, it was established that mental illness was the third largest cause of homelessness in the areas under review. This is particularly crucial as it expounds on the underlying connection between the two concepts. Crucially, Martin (2015) suggests that mental health problems diminish the capacity of affected persons to engage in income-generating activities, formulate meaningful relationships, and sustain self-care. Given these predicaments, it is critical to note that as mentally challenged individuals gravitate away from their caregivers and family members, their homelessness prospects skyrocket. Given that close to half of the population with mental health problems also suffer from substance abuse, this may also have a considerable impact on their physical health in light of their exposure to various health hazards.

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