Researchers raise awareness about substance and prescription drug use in Nebraska.
Study to gauge risk of substance, prescription drug misuse in rural communities
by  Vicky Cerino - February 05, 2019
BHECN's Dr. Shinobu Watanabe-Galloway, Associate Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health
BHECN's Dr. Tina Chasek, Associate Professor/Department of Counseling and School Psychology, Director of BHECN-Kearney
University of Nebraska researchers are joining efforts to raise awareness among rural agricultural workers about substance and prescription drug use, particularly about opioids. By raising awareness, researchers hope to influence behavior change to improve the health and safety of agricultural workers.

"The USDA report about mortality rates rising among working age rural adults is in part due to the opioid crisis. This is a major concern for rural states like Nebraska, Iowa, and Kansas where prescription rates for opioids are high and binge drinking rates are high. This project proposes a new approach to addressing the opioid crisis and alcohol misuse by taking substance use screenings out of the clinic and into agricultural work settings using an extension model."

-Christine Chasek, Ph.D., co- principal investigator, University of Nebraska at Kearney Department of Counseling and School Psychology
You're invited to join BHECN at a
Panhandle Networking Event!
BHECN Annual Awards Nominations Due March 15
Do you know someone who is making a significant contribution to behavioral health in Nebraska?
BHECN is accepting nominations until March 15 for our Annual Awards. Recipients can include providers, students, consumers and family members who are working to improve behavioral health for Nebraskans.
  • Ambassador Award - Recognizes outstanding efforts of an individual student or early career professional to reach out to other students/providers in building the future behavioral health care workforce across the state of Nebraska.

  • Courage Award - Recognizes outstanding service and outreach to the community by a consumer of behavioral health services or a family member.
Awards will be presented on Friday, April 12, 2019, during a luncheon at the UNO Thompson Alumni Center. Click here to learn more and to submit nominations.
BHECN Ambassador Career Engagement Awards
Do you feel alone in rural Nebraska with no help and no funding for your projects?

Does your project revolve around behavioral health?

At BHECN we're passionate about building awareness around behavioral health and careers in Nebraska. So much so, that we offer financial assistance to groups and organizations willing to get involved!

The deadline to apply for an award of funds is May 31, 2019 .
BHECN Ambassador Spotlights
Introducing BHECN Ambassador and Clinical Mental Health Counseling graduate student at UNO, Kylie Funk
Our February BHECN Ambassador Spotlight is about Kylie Funk, a graduate student at UNO currently pursuing a mental health degree to become a clinical mental health counselor, and she wants to work with college students. Read more.
A Video Spotlight
with Terri Mathews, Ph.D., Associate Professor University of Nebraska Medical Center
Training Opportunities
Opioids: Healthcare's Paradox
Education and Resources for the Workforce
The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)  along with  The Behavioral Health Education Center of Nebraska (BHECN)   and  The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC)  will host Opioids: Healthcare's Paradox: Education and Resources for the Workforce   in Omaha at the Scott Conference Center on March 13 and in Kearney at the Younes Conference Center on March 14, 2019.

A conference with national and local experts for health care professionals to include physicians, physician assistants, nurses, advanced practice nurses, pharmacists, dentists, psychologists, social workers, licensed mental health professionals, licensed drug alcohol counselors, and peer support providers. 
Choose the day that works best for you!
(The same conference offered in two locations.)
Omaha, Nebraska
March 13, 2019
8:30 am-2:45 pm
Kearney, Nebraska
March 14, 2019
8:30 am-2:45 pm
Funding for this conference was made possible from the State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grant 5H79TI080263-02 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration ($68,136, 100% of projected funding) subgranted through the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Behavioral Health. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.
Learn more and register for Project ECHO calls.
Upcoming Project ECHO Calls
for March
(Register by Mar 14)
Monday, March 18, 2019
Presented by Aaron Barnes , addiction recovery coach and personal trainer
Upcoming Project ECHO Calls
for April

Prescription Drug Monitoring Program
(Register by Apr 1)
Friday, April 5th, 2019
Presented by Kevin Borcher, Pharm.D.
Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Director for Nebraska Health Information Initiative (NeHII)

Teamwork-Nursing Approach to Treatment
(Register by Apr 11)
Monday, April 15th, 2019
Presented by Lori Eden, intervention nurse for The Bridge Behavioral Health & Bryan Health in Lincoln, NE
BHECN Updates
New Look for
Nebraska Behavioral Health Jobs Website
Visit our website to see the changes!

Post your internships, volunteer opportunities and job postings for free at . Looking for a new career? Post your resume!
Get started today!
BHECN's Mission
The Behavioral Health Education Center of Nebraska (BHECN), pronounced “beacon”, was established in 2009 by a legislative bill to address the shortage of behavioral health professionals in rural and underserved areas of the state. It is a unique partnership among the state legislature, academic institutions, and community partners
to create a statewide workforce solution to increase the number of licensed behavioral health professionals.

View our video to learn more about our mission, programs and initiatives.
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