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Your Call

What will it take to improve mental health care in the US?

Penguin Random House

On this edition of Your Call, Dr. Thomas Insel will be back to discuss Healing: Our Path from Mental Illness to Mental Health. In 2015, when Dr. Insel was director of the National Institute of Mental Health, an encounter with the parent of a 23-year-old with schizophrenia caused him to leave his job to investigate why our mental health system fails at every stage, not as a psychiatrist, but as a journalist in search of solutions. He shares his findings in his new book.

We'll also look at ways to improve mental health care among communities of color. Research indicates that compared with people who are white, people of color are less likely to have access to mental health services, less likely to seek out services, less likely to receive needed care, more likely to receive poor quality of care, and more likely to end services prematurely. We'll discuss ways to address these issues.


Dr. Thomas Insel, psychiatrist and neuroscientist, special advisor to California Governor Gavin Newsom, director of the National Institute of Mental Health from 2002-2015, and author of Healing: Our Path from Mental Illness to Mental Health

Kim L. Knight, MBA, MS, LMHC, Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Certified Life Coach and co-founder of Clinicians of Color

Web Resources:

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Psychology Today

The Atlantic: What American Mental Health Care is Missing

The New York Times: The ‘Nation’s Psychiatrist’ Takes Stock, With Frustration

The Wall Street Journal: Psychiatrist Thomas Insel Looks for a Cure to America’s Mental Health Crisis

Scientific American: A Renaissance for Psychedelics Could Fill a Long-Standing Treatment Gap for Psychiatric Disorders

Rose Aguilar has been the host of Your Call since 2006. She became a regular media roundtable guest in 2001. In 2019, the San Francisco Press Club named Your Call the best public affairs program. In 2017, The Nation named it the most valuable local radio show.