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A Comparison of Child Mental Health Systems in France and the United States

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Background and objectives: Economic conditions, policies, family environment and cultural models of parenting all impact a child’s well- being and development. Differing theoretical orientations in mental health between countries govern the respective under standing, assessment, and treatment of children and their families. Method: This paper provides an overview and critical examination of child mental health care systems in North America and Europe using the United States (US) and France as comparisons. Results: France has a national policy of universal access to health care; in the US access is determined largely by insurance companies and varies from state to state. Conclusions: By examining the similarities and differences between health care systems, mental health providers, training, diagnosis and treatment approaches in this cross-national comparison, much can be learned about developing effective practices to improve health care delivery worldwide.
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Keywords: Cross-cultural comparisons; France; USA; adolescents; children; mental health

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2013

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  • Adolescent Psychiatry publishes reports of original research, critical reviews of topics relevant to practitioners, clinical observations with analysis and discussion, analysis of philosophical, ethical or social aspects of the fields of psychiatry and mental health, case reports with discussions, letters, and position papers. Adolescent Psychiatry, a peer-reviewed journal, and the official journal of the American Society for Adolescent Psychiatry, aims to provide mental health professionals who work with adolescents with current information relevant to the diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders in adolescence.
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