The History of Mason Mental Health Center
by Hal Brown
(click images to enlarge)
From its inception at the very beginning of the era where public mental health services were generously funded, the Mason Mental Health Center was a barometer of the value government placed on providing high quality outpatient mental health services to people in locations that were easily accessible.
The Mason program itself was a branch office of a much larger program located in Lansing, Michigan. The town of Mason had a population of 5,500, but the rural area it served had a population of over 35,000. We ran clinics in three outlying towns in the corners of the county, and truly brought our services to an underserved population.
Why are these Mason Mental Health staff members smiling?
During the heyday of publicly funded mental health our program continued to grow. The staff increased and we moved our building to one with twice the space, and then increased our space there two-fold. We were able to provide service on a sliding fee scale and generally could see clients for as long as they needed therapy. Our paperwork requirements were minimal, and there was no such thing as managed care.