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  1. Ehrhart, Patricia M. MSN, RN, MMIN
  2. Furlong, Beth PhD, RNC


Future nursing graduates will face a challenge as they seek employment in a changing healthcare system. A managed-care system using community-based sites is the trend of the future, with economy of care as the norm. The authors describe one model for educating students to meet community mental health challenges. The chronically mentally ill have traditionally been underserved in the community, resulting in frequent and costly readmissions to psychiatric hospitals. Appropriately prepared graduates can successfully manage the care of these clients economically in the community. The integration of community mental health into the community health course group meets that challenge.