Serious Mental Illness and Treatment Prevalence

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For the past 20 years, research has consistently estimated that approximately 40% to 50% of all individuals with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder are receiving no treatment for their serious mental illness at any given time. Greater variation in the prevalence of treatment is found when serious mental illness is defined more broadly, treatment is defined by follow-up within more limited time periods, or rates of treatment are reported for specific population subsets (e.g., individuals discharged from inpatient facilities). By all definitions or time parameters, however, at least one-third and up to two-thirds of the population was untreated at any given time. This reference reviews different definitions of treatment prevalence over the past 30 years.

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