Improving capacity to monitor and support sustainability of mental health peer-run organizations

Psychiatr Serv. 2014 Feb 1;65(2):239-41. doi: 10.1176/


Peer-run mental health organizations are managed and staffed by people with lived experience of the mental health system. These understudied organizations are increasingly recognized as an important component of the behavioral health care and social support systems. This Open Forum describes the National Survey of Peer-Run Organizations, which was conducted in 2012 to gather information about peer-run organizations and programs, organizational operations, policy perspectives, and service systems. A total of 895 entities were identified and contacted as potential peer-run organizations. Information was obtained for 715 (80%) entities, and 380 of the 715 responding entities met the criteria for a peer-run organization. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act may entail benefits and unintended consequences for peer-run organizations. It is essential that we understand this population of organizations and continue to monitor changes associated with policies intended to provide better access to care that promotes wellness and recovery.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Mental Health Services / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Mental Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Mental Health Services / standards
  • Peer Group*
  • Program Evaluation / methods*
  • Self-Help Groups / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Self-Help Groups / organization & administration*
  • Self-Help Groups / standards
  • Social Support