To the editor:

Recently, the Deseret News published a report from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, which stated proudly that Utah was ranked 10th in the nation in its care for the seriously mentally ill. You did not report, however, that this ranking was a failure status.

The report from the National Alliance states in part -- "The entire public mental health system is in such bad shape that only a major overhaul can save it -- only five states are doing a passing job at a 60 percent level -- all others are failing."

The report calls upon state and national officials to terminate funding in any program which is less than 75 percent of resources are going toward the treatment of the seriously mentally ill.

Distortions of a report like this to keep failing programs going is a distinct disservice to the taxpaying public and an insult to the mentally ill.

Eugene J. Faux, M.D.