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Gaps and Opportunities in Public Mental Health: a Systems Approach

East Baltimore
2nd term
Mental Health
3 credits
Academic Year:
2021 - 2022
Instruction Method:
Class Times:
  • M W,  1:30 - 2:50pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
  • Deborah Agus
Deborah Agus

None required but 330.603.01 is recommended.


Acquaints students with mental health systems and the development of a comprehensive approach to the delivery of services to a variety of vulnerable populations living in difficult conditions in the community. Topics include a survey of the variety of current mental health services and evidence-based approaches, the impact on services of governance, organization and financing of services including a primer on Medicaid and Medicare, the link between poverty and mental health and the use of jails as mental asylums, the development of a competent workforce and an introduction to international community mental health issues. Features discussion and problem solving and involves a high degree of interaction between the participants as well as several field trips.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Define the components of a comprehensive and effective community mental health system
  2. Analyze the governance structure of a system
  3. Define and analyze the issues facing delivery of mental health services to a variety of vulnerable populations
  4. Analyze a problem and the ramifications of various solutions
  5. Design a model utilizing the concepts learned that effectively incorporates the most appropriate financing and service delivery approach to achieve values and goals and best address the specific issues identified
Methods of Assessment:

40% Class Participation (Attendance, Readings & Class Discussions); 40% Case Study Presentation;
20% Case Study Final Paper

Instructor Consent:

No consent required