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The politics of mental health
  1. Graham Towl,
  2. David Crighton
  1. Durham University, Durham, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Graham Towl, graham.towl{at}durham.ac.uk

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At the time of writing a number of issues dominate the headlines and seem set to impact on future practice. The role and funding of social care has moved in and out of the public eye but the question of how we care for growing number of elderly people with mental health problems does not go away. Nor indeed does the question of how to ensure humane and compassionate care, be it in hospitals or nursing homes. The issue of sexual offenders is also again in the news, with both high-profile and low-profile cases and media calls to address this serious issue.

The artificial divisions between health and social care bedevil many mental health systems to a greater or lesser degree. The UK for …

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