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APA Statement on the Passing of Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter

  • November 20, 2023

Washington, D.C. — The American Psychiatric Association (APA) today pauses to remember the life of Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter. Few, if any, other Americans have been able to accomplish what she did for the cause of mental health. Mrs. Carter worked relentlessly to help the millions of people in this country who have mental illness or substance use disorders. She used her bully pulpit to bring the conversation about mental health out from the darkness and to advocate for a more comprehensive system of care.

An Honorary Fellow of the APA, Mrs. Carter was a friend to those whom society might otherwise have forgotten. She was a stalwart for parity and a major player in the passage of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008, which changed the game for patients and their families across the nation. She will be deeply missed, and her legacy will live on for all those who are touched by mental illness and substance use disorders.

American Psychiatric Association

The American Psychiatric Association, founded in 1844, is the oldest medical association in the country. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 38,000 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and research of mental illnesses. APA’s vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information, please visit

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