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This prospective study of community cases examined: (a) needs for care; (b) whether services meet the needs; and (c) personal factors associated with unmet needs.Two separate 'Needs for Care Assessment Schedule - Community version' evaluations identified 38 subjects with No Need (NN), 19 with Met Needs (MN) and 25 with Unmet Needs (UNM). Other instruments included the Diagnostic Interview Schedule - Abridged Version (DISSA) and repeated measures of symptoms and social functioning.(a) Cases did not equate needs. (b) Services utilization did not equate having met needs. (c) Respondents with UNM were more likely to present high rates of lifetime DSM-III-R disorders, no marital relationship ever, no employment, high rates of life events, and physical or sexual abuse in childhood. They have worse outcome in terms of distress and social functioning.Personnal factors may prevent respondents from seeking, engaging and benefiting from treatment.