ELA Mental Illness Project

Argumentative Outline


Medical treatment for the mentally ill is an insufficiently managed issue because many of the patients don't get treated after being hospitalized and because it is becoming very challenging to obtain the treatment needed.

Sources/Analysis Used To Support Thesis + Articles' Position

"Girl Scouts Engage in the Fight Against Mental Illness Stigma with Mental Health Awareness Patch"

From: Mental Health Weekly Digest, September 23 2013

Author: Unknown

Position: Girl Scouts can help raise awareness for mental illness and can reduce the stigma related to mental illness.

Support I Would Use For Thesis: "Mental Illness is more prevalent than diabetes or cancer."

"Mental Illness carries a stigma that causes additional suffering and often is a barrier to treatment and support."

Analysis: Mental illness has a stigma that blocks patients from treatment which adds to how flawed the treatment system is. The fact that Mental Illness is a common problem only adds to the fire. For example, more and more patients are being affected and less and less of them are able to be treated. This would support the thesis greatly by proving how hard it is to even be treated due to the stigma created about mental illness, some don't even think its a real issue.

"A Solution That Now Looks Crazy"

From: The New York Times, January 14, 2014

Author: Richard A. Friedman, M.D.

Position: Treatment for the mentally ill is changing for the worst.

Support I Would Use For Thesis: "The egregious error was the failure to provide treatment to patients after they left the hospital." "The idea that community mental health centers could supplant (replace) state mental hospitals was little more than a fantasy." and "Tragically, vast numbers of deinstitutionalized patients ended up in jails and prisons, in nursing homes or homeless on our streets."

Analysis: This shows how mental illness care is changing but the patients are lacking the follow up treatment they need to stay healthy. They support the thesis by showing how the patients not getting full treatment results in many of them ending up in jail, nursing homes, or just become homeless. The details show how important treatment is and how poorly managed it is getting done, the patients aren't even checked up on to make sure they are okay.

"IU Study: "Backbone" if mental illness stigma common in 16 countries studied"

From: Mental Health Weekly Digest, April 22, 2013

Author: News Reporter

Position: The stigma mental illness brings is the main issue with it.

Support I Would Use For Thesis: "Stigma is considered a major obstacle to effective treatment for many Americans who experience these devastating illnesses."

"With the prevalence of mental health problems being so high, no individuals or families will go untouched by these issues."

Analysis: These supporting details help further show that a lot of people are having mental problems and that the stigma mental illness has is only effecting their care/treatment. The stigma is relatively blocking the patients treatment towards their issue. These details can also help prove that treatment is becoming a necessity now that a huge amount of people are having these issues. This greatly supports the thesis because is stresses how the stigma ,shame, that comes with having a mental illness in other peoples' eyes is affecting the medical treatment the victim needs.

"A history of treatment for mental illness"

From: The Washington Post, June 28, 2014

Author: Unknown

Position: Treatment for the mentally ill has changed for the worst.

Support I Would Use For Thesis: "The state cannot confine a "non-dangerous individual" who is capable of surviving in freedom alone or with the help of others."

and "Huge state-run hospitals close, and the number of psychiatric inpatients declines rapidly."

Analysis: These supporting details show how it is becoming harder to treat patients diagnosed with mental illness, making the treatment system look poorly managed. It helps show treatment is becoming more difficult to even do. The court won't even let the state confine a patient to a hospital unless they fit a certain set of criteria. These details largely support the thesis by showing how insufficiently managed the "being sent to treatment" issue is. It seems nearly impossible to even qualify for medical treatment if you suffer from mental illness with the lack of state control over confinement.

Opposition + Responses

Arguments That Could Occur

  • "The mentally ill can just take medication as a form of treatment and not have to bother with being hospitalized."
  • "Mental illness isn't as deadly as other diseases such as cancer and influenza so the treatment should be poor."
  • "Only four percent of violence in the United States can be attributed to people with mental illness, so treatment shouldn't be a major necessity."

  • Medication used as a form of treatment would too heavily rely on a long-term involuntary psychiatric commitment.
  • Mental illness could potentially be just as deadly as many serious cases result in suicide and violent outbursts.
  • The treatment would help long term effects on the violence rate and it shouldn't be in the state it is in now, the mentally ill should be treated and the care shouldn't be this insufficiently managed.

Breakthrough brain stimulation treatments for mental illness

Why The Video Was Included

This video shows how medical treatment can radically change in the future, however as of now, mental illness treatment is an insufficiently managed and flawed treatment system.

Until there are major breakthroughs, similar to the video above, we will see mental illness on the rise and treatment plans that continue to be ineffective long term.

Project By Nikolas Parker Period 5