June 26, 2017

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This edition of the NAMI-NYS E-News comes at a crossroads on advocacy issues. New York State just concluded our legislative session and we provide a summary of two advocacy victories. On the national level, our advocacy voice is needed more than ever as the Senate aims to move forward with their healthcare bill. Below you will find ways to voice your concerns on the Senate bill as well as events taking place across the state this week to discuss the future of healthcare in New York.  

We also want to post a correction, as last week we ran an article about NAMI Queens-Nassau's FaithNet event without including a link to the full article. You can click here to read the full article written by Linda Baron Katz.

Finally, there will be no E-News on July 3rd. We hope all our readers have a enjoyable and safe 4th of July. 
As always, we want to know about the work you are doing. Please email  Matthew@NAMINYS.org with details and pictures about your work. This way we can feature it in the E-News and print Newsletter. Showcasing your work will allow others to learn from you, and that's the best way we can grow together as an organization. 

Hope Starts With You!

New York State Legislative Sessions Concludes With Two
Advocacy Victories For NAMI-NYS

The New York State Legislative session concluded on Wednesday, June 20th with the passage of two of NAMI-NYS Advocacy Action priorities. First, Kendra's Law, New York State's Assisted Outpatient Treatment program, was extended for another five years. While NAMI-NYS advocated to make the law permanent, we are grateful that the state will continue to invest for those with serious mental illness and make sure they have the first access to services that are designed to advance their recovery and prevent homelessness, hospitalization and incarceration.

One of our other priorities was ensuring access to proper medication for people with chronic mental illness and co-occurring disorders. For two years, NAMI-NYS has supported legislation that will create a new pathway for interchangeable biologic substitution.The bill passed both houses and will enhance patient access to new and potentially less costly medications while ensuring patient safety through appropriate physician notification. Biologics are complex medicines manufactured from living organisms. Unlike traditional "small molecule" drugs, biologics are not chemically synthesized but rather are manufactured from living cells by programming a particular cell line to produce a desired therapeutic substance in a highly controlled sterile environment.  

NAMI-NYS has also been advocating for a consumer protection bill ensuring that all prescriptions patients and their families are currently taking will remain at the same formulary level and cost throughout the contract period with their insurance provider. While this bill passed the Assembly, it did not make to the floor of the Senate for a vote. We will continue to advocate for this in the second year of of the 2017-18 legislative session term. 

In all, this was a good session for NAMI-NYS as we contributed to a broad advocacy coalition which led to a significant investment in the mental health workforce. We also saw continued investments in crisis intervention trainings (CIT) which was a key element in our efforts to improve the mental illness-criminal justice interface.

NAMI-NYS Members to Participate in 2017 NAMI Hill Day

A key component of this week's NAMI National Convention will be the Thursday's Hill Day. NAMI-NYS has more than ten meetings set up with members of the New York State Congressional Delegation. For those not traveling to Washington D.C., NAMI will be setting up a Virtual Hill Day and we will be sending out an Action Alert about that. You can click here to review the advocacy issues we will be discussing on Hill Day. You can also click here to participate in the advocacy against the Senate health care bill, Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 (BCRA).

NAMI-NYS Seeking Candidates for Board of Directors

The NAMI-NYS Nomination and Elections Committee is seeking qualified candidates for the NAMI-NYS Board of Directors.  A qualified candidate must be a member in good standing, as must the individual nominating the candidate.  Both must also be members of affiliates in good standing. The make-up of the Board should reflect the diverse population of New York, and the Nominating and Election Committee is also interested in candidates with development and financial experience.  The deadline for nominations is September 11, 2017 and should be sent to the NAMI-NYS office or the chairperson of the Nominating and Election Committee, Evelyne Tropper. To view the request for nominations, click here.  For a copy of the nominating form, click here.

NAMI-NYS Holds In Our Own Voice Training

On June 24th and 25th NAMI-NYS held a statewide In Our Own Voice training. The training was led by Cynthia Scott and Lady Charmaine Day. Seven people were certified. We thank Lady Charmaine and Cynthia and congratulate our newest presenters.

NAMI Putnam Holds 4th Annual Putnam County 
Mental Health Awareness Event

NAMI Putnam sponsored the 4th Annual Putnam County Mental Health Awareness event in Carmel on May 6, 2017.  County Executive MaryEllen Odell greeted everyone in front of the Putnam County Historical Court House. Other participants included County Judge, James Reitz, and Carmel Councilman Frank Lombardi, Ashley Brody, Executive Director of Search for Change. We thank NAMI Putnam President, Ed Murphy and all who participated for their commitment to increasing awareness of mental health issues in Putnam County. 


NAMI's Emily Blair Writes in the Hill That Medicaid is a Lifeline for One in Ten Veterans
Healthcare is perhaps the most looming mandate currently before Congress. NAMI Manager of Military and Veterans' Policy Emily Blair recently penned an op-ed for political magazine The Hill, outlining the possible effect Congress's proposals on healthcare might have on veterans. Click here to read the full article.

The 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference will once again feature a focus track on veterans and military families.

New York State News
Governor Cuomo Announces Series Of Expert Panels On The Future Of Health Care In New York Under
The Washington Health Care Plans

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo last week announced a series of expert panels and community roundtables about how the Washington health care plans could affect health care in New York State. The panels, which will be held across the state in late June, will feature Cuomo administration officials and experts and will encourage New Yorkers to understand what is at stake and how to best protect their families from upcoming changes to our health care system. Click here to read the Governor's statement on the federal health care bills. Click here to learn more about the panels including schedules. 

The 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference will have a session on new programs in New York State including Home and Community Based Services (HCBS).

National News
Does Depression Contribute to Opioid Abuse?
Opioid abuse presents a major public health crisis in the United States. That being said, the majority of opioid abuse, such as heroin abuse, stems from being prescribed opiate painkillers after a medical procedure. For virtually all patients, painkillers such as oxycodone do the job for which they are prescribed. In some cases, the patient runs the course of the drugs and stops them per their physician's instructions. Others become addicted. When the prescription lapses, or when their doctor will no longer refill it, these individuals turn to opioid street drugs.

Why do some users become addicts, and others not? Recent studies link untreated depression and the tendency to develop opioid addiction. There are several causes for this link. Primarily, depression can make the experience of pain more severe. Perhaps explaining this, individuals suffering from depression don't produce as many endorphins as the rest of the population. Endorphins are the chemicals the brain produces during physical activity, causing a "runner's high." Another consideration is that opioid drugs, at least temporarily, make the user happy and calm. If the user has untreated depression, the likelihood is that this is not a feeling they experience without the drug. As a footnote, pain clinics increasingly prescribe tricyclic or SNRI antidepressants (such as amitriptyline or duloxetine) as part of a regimen for chronic pain.

Click here to read the full article.

The 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference will have a focus on dual-diagnosis and opioid issues including a Narcan training. 

AMA Told Mental Health Diagnosis Still a Stigma for Docs

In a June 12 article, Shannon Firth of MedPage Today reported on several resolutions currently before the House of Delegates of the American Medical Association, the association which regulates the licensing of medical doctors. These resolutions are being brought in response to the high rate of attrition in the medical profession due to burnout, and in some cases, suicide. The AMA's current policy requires a doctor's full psychiatric history to be disclosed to their state's board of licensure. The resolutions being considered would repeal this rule, opting instead for a regulation similar to that for physical illness, which requires that the treating physician report an illness only if it would cause potential harm to patients. Officially, ranking members of the AMA support such measures, and note that they would allow deeper study into how mental health affects physicians. To read the whole MedPage Today article, click here.

At 75, Dale Chihuly Discusses Struggles with Mental Health
In a recent interview with the Associated Press, glassblowing artist Dale Chihuly speaks out about his struggles with bipolar disorder. At times over a career that started in the 1960s, Chihuly has channeled both his manic and depressed energies into his art. In manic phases, he was able to reach out to his connections around the country and the world, and he progressed with multiple projects at a time. In depressed phases, Chihuly's contemporaries, and later his wife, Leslie, ran the day-to-day operations of his studio while he balanced self-care with progressing one or two projects. "I'm lucky that I like movies." Chihuly said of managing his depressive phases, "If I don't feel good, I'll put on a movie."

In coming out regarding bipolar disorder, Mr. Chihuly adds to the multitude of gifted individuals who prosper despite struggling with mental illnesses. Click here to read the interview in full.


Director's Message
RDoC: Outcomes to Causes and Back

In the second of two director's messages on Research Domain Criteria (RDoC), Dr. Gordon talks about the role of computational psychiatry in the effort to understand the brain processes underlying behavior and mental disorders.  

Click here to read Dr. Gordon's full message. 

Watch Mental Health Now Featuring
NIMH's Dr. Robert Heinssen

Click here to watch the episode of the NAMI-NYS produced television program Mental Health Now featuring Dr. Robert Heinssen, , Director, Division of Services and Intervention Research, the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). The episode was recorded when Dr. Heinssen was one of the featured speakers at our 2016 Education Conference. In the episode, Dr. Heinssen discusses several NIMH initiatives, the road ahead with new director Dr. Joshua Gordon and how New York State took findings from the NIMH Recovery After Initial Schizophrenic Episode (RAISE) study to introduce the progressive early intervention program OnTrackNY.

Several NIMH Studies on Irritability in Children 
Looking for Recruits

Why study irritability? During the 1990s, there was a significant increase in the number of children being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. After years of studies, NIMH researchers concluded that, although children with severe irritability were being diagnosed with bipolar disorder, severe irritability and bipolar disorder are not the same. However, irritability, like bipolar disorder, can be very impairing for children, and little is known about what causes it or how to treat it. Therefore, today, NIMH clinicians continue to investigate severe irritability and the related diagnosis of Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD).

Children pass through many phases of development as they grow up. It can be hard to know if a child is going through normal development or showing signs of something more serious. Occasional outbursts are a normal outcome of being tired, uncomfortable, or frustrated. In some children, it can be chronic and explosive.

Children who enroll in NIMH studies have irritability that signi´Čücantly impacts their functioning at home, in school and with other children.

Click here to learn more about the current studies and how to participate. 


2017 NAMIWalksNYS September 23rd

NAMI-NYS looks forward to building on the success of our inaugural NAMIWalks NYS. The 2017 NAMIWalks NYS will be taking place on Saturday, September 23rd, at Jennings Landing in Albany. You can click here to start your team and/or donate to the walk.  For more information you can email  heide@naminys.org.

Save the Dates

Click here to learn more and register for the 2017 NAMI-NYS Education Conference- Engagement, Implementation, Internvention: Three Pronged Approach to Sustainable Mental Health Recovery, taking place November 10-12 at the Desmond Hotel in Albany.

JUNE 29- Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents:
An Overview of R.S.S. Crisis Diversion
& Stabilization Services
presented by
Jennifer Doret, LMHC
Thursday,  June 29, 2017 from  5:00 pm - 7:30 pm  in the CDPC Family Resource Center. For more information or to register contact:Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.
Click here for flyer

JULY 13- Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents:
"An Overview of Mental Health Services
in Albany County"
presented by
Tyleia Harrell, Behavioral Health Systems Manager
Thursday, July 13, 2017 from 5:00 pm - 7:30 pm in the CDPC Family Resource Center. For more information or to register contact:Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.

July 21-NAMIWalks NYS Bowling for Hope Second Strike.Friday July 21st, 6p.m.-8 pm at the  East Greenbush Bowling Center,  570 Columbia Turnpike,  East Greenbush, NY 12061.Tickets are $12.00 without shoe rental and $15.00 with shoe rental. Please contact Heide Garner at (518) 462-2000/ heide@naminys.org to sign up.

JULY 27 Capital District Psychiatric Center Family Services Presents:
"An Overview of the
N.Y.S. Justice Center
for the Protection of
People with Special Needs"
Thursday, July 27, 2017 from 5:00 pm - 7:30 pm in the CDPC Family Resource Center. For more information or to register contact:Frank Greco, Director of Family Services (518) 549-6816.

Signature Programs

JULY 12 - NAMI Rochester Basics. Wednesdays, July 12th - August 16th 6:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. at 320 N Goodman St., suite 102 Rochester NY. To register please contact NAMI Rochester at (585) 423-1593.

JULY 12-NAMI-NYC Metro Basics PROFESSIONAL CLASS (for professionals only). Wednesdays, July 12th - August 16th at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi at    (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org.

JULY12-NAMI Central Suffolk Basics. Wednesday evenings July 12th- August 23rd from 6:00 pm-8:30 pm at the Farmingville Mental Health Clinic, 15 Horseblock Place, Farmingville, NY 11738. Registration is required. Contact: Andrea Stolz, astolz@fsl-li.org (631) 223-5030. 

SEPTEMBER 6-NAMI Rochester Family-to-Family. Wednesdays, September 6th -November 29th, 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm. NAMI Rochester Office, 320 N. Goodman Street, Suite 103, Rochester, NY 14607. Contact Beth Winslow-D'Amico at (585) 423-1593 or beth@namirochester.org.

SEPTEMBER 12-NAMI-NYC Metro Basics. Tuesdays, September 12 - October 17, 6:00 pm- 8:30 pm at    505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.   To register contact Deniece Chi at (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org.

SEPTEMBER 13- NAMI-NYC Metro Basics (SPANISH SPEAKING). Wednesdays, September 13th-October 18th, 6:00 pm- 8:30 pm at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org. 

SEPTEMBER 14-NAMI-NYC Metro Basics. Thursdays, September 14th- October 19th 10:00 am-12:30 pm at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi at (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org.

NOVEMBER 1-NAMI-NYC Metro Basics. Wednesdays, November 1st-December 6, 6:00 pm- 8:30 pm at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi (212)684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org.

NOVEMBER 2-NAMI NYC Metro Basics. Thursdays, November 2nd - December 7th, 10:00 am-12:30 pm at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi at (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org. 

NOVEMBER 3-NAMI-NYC Metro Basics (SPANISH SPEAKING) Fridays, November 3rd - December 8th, 10:00 am-12:30 pm at 505 8th Avenue, Suite 1103, New York, NY 10018.  To register contact Deniece Chi at (212) 684-3365 x 203 / parent@naminyc.org. 

Please contact your local affiliate program leaders for more information and how to enroll.
NAMI In Our Own Voice Presenter Training
June 24th-25th, 2017
Trainers: Cynthia Scott & Lady Charmaine Day
Location: NAMI-NYS Office Albany
NAMI Family-to-Family Teacher Training
July 14th-16th, 2017
Trainers: Ann Canastra & Cheri Caiella
Location: Comfort Suite Cicero-Syracuse
NAMI Homefront Teacher Training
September 16th-17th 2017
Trainers: Pam Solomon & Jerry Burton
Location: NAMI-NYS Office Albany
NAMI Family-to-Family Teacher Training
October 20th-22nd, 2017
Trainers: Patti Sacher & Bonnie Goldberg
Location: NAMI-NYS Office Albany

To have your events and Signature Programs listed in the E-Newsletter contact Christine Rickeman at christine@naminys.org.   

NAMI-NYS | 99 Pine Street Suite 105| Albany, New York 12207 | (518) 462-2000