The Lessons of Shell Shock

The global crisis wrought by the First World War prompted the birth of free mental health care.

Photograph of the matron and staff of the Lady Chichester Hospital, Hove, 1921. East Sussex Record Office.

Free mental health care began 100 years ago, after the First World War, when a handful of doctors and voluntary workers established clinics and hospitals that drew on the ‘talking therapies’ used to treat shell-shocked soldiers.

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