Mental Health Dissemination Network of Arizona Mental Health Dissemination Network of Arizona
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Consumers and Families Database

Purpose of the Consumers and Families Database

The Internet contains thousands of consumer- and family-oriented web sites on mental illness and mental disorders. It is often quite challenging to find information on specific topics. The main purpose of the Consumers and Families Database is to provide a tool for organizing and searching for information so that people can more easily find what they need. We also want to create a process that encourages consumers and families to use and add to the database themselves. We hope this partnership will foster a climate of change, recovery and independence.

The Consumers and Families Database includes a wide variety of links. Because MHDNA is an independent organization and not associated with any particular proprietary, advocacy or interest group, we do not attempt to promote any one particular view. Our philosophy is to include possibly controversial sites as well as ones expressing a more conventional approach, so that people can make up their own minds. We encourage consumers and families to tell us what they find useful or not useful, and to help us improve the database over time.

Who Will Be Interested in The Consumers and Families Database?

The Consumers and Families Database will be of interest to people:

  • who have used, are using, or think they might use the public or private mental health system;
  • who want to learn more about a particular mental health disorder or illness but don't have a clinical or professional mental health degree;
  • who need to find mental health providers, services, support groups or other resources for themselves, a friend, or a family member;
  • who want to learn about or participate in mental health advocacy and system reform efforts at the state, local, or international level.

Although this database was developed primarily for consumers, family members and advocates, we think mental health providers will also find many of these sites of interest. And although the more clinically-oriented sites were chosen because their explanations would be clear to people without medical degrees, many of these sites are comprehensive enough to also be included in the provider-oriented Best Practices Database.

How Do I Use the Consumers and Families Database?

The Consumers and Families Database is arranged under three general categories: (1) Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment, (2) Mental Health Services, and (3) Consumer Education and Support. To make your search easier, we have listed several topics under each category. Once you have chosen your topic, clicking on the "Submit" button will bring up a list of sites that our staff has classified as relevant. All of the sites listed are annotated - you can read a brief description of the site and decide whether you want to go there.

Tip: Under Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment try searching under the specific mental illness you are interested in as well as under the category of "multiple disorders". The sites listed under "multiple disorders" are comprehensive sites that provide information on a number of mental illnesses.

The selection of the categories and topics and the classification of the sites have, by necessity, been subjective. Mental Health is a rapidly changing field, and disagreements over language, classification and practice are common. Our intent is to provide a map of sorts to consumers and families to help you find the way, but we need your feedback so we can structure our research topics to better meet your needs. Let us know how we can make the Consumers and Families Database better!

How Can I Add Information to the Consumers and Families Database?

New consumer-oriented health information is constantly being added on the Web. Although we will continue to research and add new sites, it is impossible for our staff to keep up with all of it. Please help us. If you find a site that you think should be included in the Consumers and Families Database, click on the link below and follow the instructions. You can submit a link to a web site already in existence, or a reference to a specific report, article, program or organization that is not currently online.

Add to the Consumers and Families Database




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