Clifford Beers

Clifford Beers is the founder of the modern day mental health movement. He established the International Committee for Mental Hygiene in 1931, known today as the World Federation for Mental Health. Beers courageously shared his own experience with mental illness in his autobiography, “A Mind That Found Itself.” This renowned book opened the nation’s eyes to the mistreatment of people with mental illness and led to the creation of modern treatment methods for mental health disorders. Because of his humility, courage and vision, the creation of the National Mental Health Association was realized— revolutionizing and changing people’s attitudes and misconceptions regarding mental illness and its proper diagnoses and management.

Social issues Clifford Beers addressed:

  • Mental health care awareness and education
  • Misconceptions about mental illness
  • Diagnosis and medical help for those with mental illness
  • Protecting the rights of people disabled by mental illness

Social issues that need to be addressed today:

  • Mental Health Disabilities – The World Health Organization has reported that four of the 10 leading causes of disability in developed countries are mental disorders. Source
  • Mental Health Education and Awareness – People must be educated that mental illnesses can affect persons of any age, race, religion or income. Mental illnesses are not the result of personal weakness, lack of character or poor upbringing. Source
  • Treating Mental Health Patients – People must be aware that mental illnesses are treatable. Most people diagnosed with a serious mental illness can experience relief from their symptoms by actively participating in an individual treatment plan. Source