A Report on America’s Health Care System for Adults with Serious Mental Illness
Grading the States 2009: A Report on America’s Health Care Sytem for Adults with Serious Mental Illness
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Tennessee: D

Grading the States 2009 Report Card: Tennessee

In 2006, Tennessee’s mental health care system received a grade of C. Three years later, the grade has fallen to a D. Tennessee is on a downward slide. Changes to TennCare have put great strains on the system, and many people don not have access to needed services. Full narrative (PDF).

Grades by Category Detailed Score Card (PDF)

  1. Health Promotion and Measurement: D 25% of Total Grade
    Basic measures, such as the number of programs delivering evidence-based practices, emergency room wait-times, and the quantity of psychiatric beds by setting.
  2. Financing & Core Treatment/Recovery Services: C 45% of Total Grade
    A variety of financing measures, such as whether Medicaid reimburses providers for all, or part of evidence-based practices; and more.
  3. Consumer & Family Empowerment: C 15% of Total Grade
    Includes measures such as consumer and family access to essential information from the state, promotion of consumer-run programs, and family and peer education and support.
  4. Community Integration and Social Inclusion: D 15% of Total Grade
    Includes activities that require collaboration among state mental health agencies and other state agencies and systems.


  • National leader on supportive housing
  • Progress on jail diversion and law enforcement training
  • Peer support centers throughout the state

Urgent Needs

  • Expand the safety net program for former TennCare recipients
  • Protect funding
  • Address severe workforce shortages

Additional Information and Resources

Full Narrative (PDF) | Detailed Score Card (PDF) | Full Report | Order Hard Copy

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Grading the States Online Discussion: Share your comments, reactions, personal stories, and ideas around NAMI's report on the state of America's health care system for serious mental illness.

Grading the States 2006 Report Card: Tennessee

"When one doctor’s caseload is so enormous, how can they possibly offer much more help than a write for meds ... If you are not close to killing yourself or hurting others, then you’re stable enough for a quick dismissal."
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Mike Fitzpatrick, NAMI Executive Director

Consumer and Family Member Comments
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