A Cause for Alarm

Official Review

In A Cause for Alarm, Joseph Vanable provides readers with a close look at the prevalence of serious and persistent mental illness, or SMI, in the US. These conditions include schizophrenia, major depression, and bipolar disorder among others. According to the author, SMI are found in 10% of the general population. Vanable explores the stigmas surrounding psychotic, mood, substance abuse, and eating disorders, and the fact that children also suffer from mental illness that can include ADHD and autism. He delves into the biology behind mental illness, providing readers with a detailed description of the changes that occur in the brain’s synapses, and he discusses the way in which SMI is inherited. Current treatments for SMI as well as historical treatments are adequately discussed. Vanable shares a long list of well-known and successful people, including writers, composers, scientists, and politicians, who have had SMI and contributed meaningfully to society. He shares information on those who oppose treatment for SMI and also writes about the serious lack of psychiatrists able to diagnose and provide treatment for mental disorders. Since these are public health issues, the costs of treatment and how insurance companies provide coverage is also shared. Vanable moves logically and methodically throughout his discussion, providing readers with a well-balanced and informative take on this important issue. For those wishing to learn about mental illnesses in the US, Vanable’s book is a good place to start.

Star Rating

Author: Joseph W. Vanable Jr.
Website: Joseph Vanable Mental Illness Public Policy