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Don't Mourn: Organize. Reviving Mental Health Services Research for Healthcare Quality Improvement


Address correspondence to Kimberly E. Hoagwood, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, New York University School of Medicine, One Park Avenue at East 33rd, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10016. E-mail:


The structure, organization, management, and design of the mental health system are changing profoundly as new healthcare policies reshape its configurations. This special issue is a call to action for the mental health services research field. The articles represent an important attempt to identify specific concepts, constructs, and findings from psychosocial treatment research about fidelity and integrity of treatment and align them with healthcare quality. However, the current structure and processes for deriving quality indicators place other demands on the extant research base. These will challenge this migration unless changes are made in leadership around consistent measurement strategies, payment mechanisms to support quality, and attention to technological infrastructure development. The mental health services research field should be proactive. Pediatric issues need special attention, especially as applied to community-based services for children and their families.

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