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January 25, 2018

Advancing Public Policies for People with Mental Illness, Chemical Dependency or Developmental Disabilities   

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Francine Sinkoff, Editor
De Blasio administration files suit against major drug companies over city's opioid epidemic - NYC

Governor Cuomo Announces Transformation of the Health Care System in Brooklyn - NYC

Syracuse respite home offers mentally ill alternative to hospital ER - Onondaga

Onondaga County blames opioid manufacturers and distributors for heroin crisis, files lawsuit

OASAS Announces Free Naloxone Training Sessions in Greene County

Franklin County adds types of synthetic opioids to drug-testing policy

Citizen Advocates awarded funds for care collaborative - Franklin

City, county tackle opioid issue - Steuben

Nassau Queens Performing Provider System to Provide $1.8 Million to 33 Agencies in Nassau and Queens for Health-Related Projects - Long Island
NYS Developmental Disabilities Planning Council: Statewide and Regional Housing Collaboratives Funding Opportunity

DDPC announces funding to select one grantee in the amount of up to $750,000 for 3 years (up to $250,000 per year) to assist in the development of non-certified housing options available to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities through establishing regional housing collaboratives, statewide communities of practice, and educational programs for stakeholders. 

In 2016, the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) published a report concerning the State's residential request list.  Among the report's findings was that 33% of respondents preferred non-certified housing instead of the more-traditional certified group home option, and 90% of respondents expressed interest in learning more about non-certified options.

Making community- based non-certified housing opportunities available requires individuals with I/DD, family members and other relevant stakeholders acquire new skill sets in a variety of disciplines that go beyond the traditional OPWDD service system. Read more here.

Oral Slow-Release Morphine Beneficial for Treatment of Opioid Use Disorders

U.S. lets more healthcare workers prescribe opioid addiction treatment

I've treated scores of people like Tom Petty. Drugs are only part of their story

Intensive behavior therapy no better than conventional support in treating teenagers with antisocial behavior

Opioid Addiction Linked to Length of First Prescription

Speech analysis software predicted psychosis in at-risk patients with up to 83% accuracy

Substance-Induced Psychosis Associated With Development of Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder

Vaping Can Be Addictive and May Lure Teenagers to Smoking, Science Panel Concludes

Tips to Improve EHR Tasks Without Compromising Patient Encounters
New Resource from SAMHSA-HRSA:  Sustaining Integrated Behavioral Health Services - Strategies and Tools for Recruitment, Retention, and Workforce Development
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Integrated care teams currently serve more than 25 million patients in the U.S. The key to successful integrated care is high-functioning multidisciplinary teams. Teams should be comprised of staff with the core professional competencies and personal qualities needed to deliver services in integrated care settings. To achieve this, organizations should develop strategies and utilize best practices to recruit, hire, train, and retain competent care providers who function well in a team environment. The capacity to function well in a team is an important skill for clinicians working in integrated care settings.

This brief guide provides managers (including primary care and behavioral health medical directors, team leads and supervisors) with information to assist them in developing integrated care teams with the necessary skills.
January 30, 12 - 1 pm, CTAC
January 30, 2:30 - 4 pm, SAMHSA
January 31, 2 - 3:30 pm, SAMHSA-HRSA

February 1, 2 - 3 pm, Health Data Management
February 16, 12 - 1 pm, CTAC

What Are the Megatrends Shaping Data-Driven Healthcare?
February 27, 1 - 2 pm, Manatt Health



Officers, Chairs & Regional Reps Call
February 7: 8 am

Office Closed - Lincoln's Birthday
February 12

Office Closed - President's Day
February 19

Children & Families Committee Meeting
February 20: 11:30 am - 1 pm, GTM

Mental Hygiene Planning Committee Meeting
February 20: 1 - 2:30 pm, GTM

Contact CLMHD for all Call In and Go To Meeting information, 518.462.9422 
Mobile Health Units Are Latest Telehealth Tool to Fight Opioid Abuse

Six mobile health units are providing telehealth services in western New York in an effort to combat the state's drug abuse crisis.

Funded by a $1.7 million grant, Buffalo-based BestSelf Behavioral Health deployed four vehicles in September and two more in December to patrol communities in Erie and Niagara counties. The RV-sized vehicles are equipped with exam rooms and telemedicine equipment to provide medication-assisted treatment and counseling for people with opiate addictions.

The state's grant to BestSelf was part of a $25 million grant to New York's Office of Addictions and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) from Health and Human Services Department's Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

The telehealth vans, part of BestSelf's Recovery Connections program, are the latest addition to a growing national effort to compact the opioid crisis through innovative telehealth and telemedicine programs.  Read more here.
Cuomo Proposes Opioid Tax to Pay for Drug Epidemic

One of the new sources of revenue included in Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed executive budget is an opioid epidemic surcharge. The 2 cent tax per milligram of active opioid ingredient on pills would be levied on drug manufacturers.

Robert Mujica, Cuomo's budget director, says it could help accomplish two important goals, including raising $125 million for the Opioid Prevention, Treatment and Recovery Fund.

"It offsets our costs," Mujica said. "We're spending over $200 million this year on the epidemic. It's an increase over last year. But also we want to discourage opioid use. So similar to a tax on cigarettes, if it gets too expensive to use those drugs, perhaps they will move on to other, less addictive drugs."

The tax would help pay for more treatment slots in recovery programs, recovery centers and prevention campaigns. Read more here.
1 Son, 6 Hours, 4 Overdoses: A Family's Relentless Cycle

PEMBROKE, N.H. - The first time Patrick Griffin overdosed one afternoon in May, he was still breathing when his father and sister found him on the floor around 1:30. When he came to, he was in a foul mood and began arguing with his father, who was fed up with his son's heroin and fentanyl habit.

Patrick, 34, feeling morose and nauseous, lashed out. He sliced a love seat with a knife, smashed a glass bowl, kicked and broke a side table and threatened to kill himself. Shortly after 3, he darted into the bathroom, where he shot up and overdosed again. He fell limp, turned blue and lost consciousness. His family called 911. Emergency medical workers revived him with Narcan, the antidote that reverses opioid overdoses.

Throughout the afternoon his parents, who are divorced, tried to persuade Patrick to go into treatment. His father told him he could not live with him anymore, setting off another shouting match. Around 4, Patrick slipped away and shot up a third time. He overdosed again, and emergency workers came back and revived him again. They took him to a hospital, but Patrick checked himself out.
Back at his mother's house and anxious to stave off withdrawal, he shot up again around 7:30, overdosing a fourth time in just six hours. His mother, frantic, tried pumping his chest, to no avail, and feared he was dead.   Read more here .
What Are Health Homes Measuring?

A couple of weeks ago, we reported on our new analysis of the Medicaid health home landscape and its effect on how care coordination is delivered. We found that states are moving toward value-based reimbursement (VBR) for health home provider organizations.

Multiple states with health homes are moving to VBR as a mechanism to incentivize provider organizations through shared cost savings or alternative payment models. This movement to VBR is being undertaken to create sustainability to health home programs as the current per member per month (PMPM) health home payment rates lose federal contribution after eight quarters unless a state augments the federal program with a different waiver or other legislative funding.

There are currently five states-District of Columbia, Rhode Island, Iowa, New York (still in planning phases), and Tennessee with approval for VBR for health home arrangements. Like most issues of policy and practice in Medicaid, those VBR initiatives are dissimilar. There are shared savings models and performance withhold models-all with different performance measures.

While individual states have reported how they've fared on those measures, CMS has yet to release a comprehensive report detailing how states have performed. For the four states with VBR for health homes underway or in the implementation process, the differences and the additional quality measures they are including is notable. Read more here.
National Council Joins RWJF Initiative to Spur Innovation in Value-Based Payment and Care

Community behavioral health organizations and community health centers, which serve a combined total of more than 37 million people, face increasing pressure to move to care models that reward value over volume. Unfortunately, they lack resources to build the necessary infrastructure to navigate the evolving payment environment.

To mitigate this problem, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) awarded $2.9 million to the National Council for Behavioral Health (National Council) and the National Association of Community Health Centers to support the Delta Center for a Thriving Safety Net (Delta Center). This national collaborative will provide technical assistance with the goal of building capacity within behavioral health state associations and primary care associations to promote the diffusion of value-based payment arrangements within their memberships. The National Council will work with the Delta Center to guide the selection of the behavioral health state associations and primary care associations through a Request for Proposal (RFP) process.  Read more here.
New York State Autism Spectrum Disorders Advisory Board Announces Upstate and Downstate Public Forums

In November of 2016, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed into law Chapter 469 of 2016 which created the Autism Spectrum Disorders Advisory Board (the Board) to help provide guidance and information to New York policymakers, individuals with an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis, and families seeking reliable information regarding available services and supports.
The Members of the Board are tasked with several important duties including: 
  • Studying and reviewing the effectiveness of supports and services currently being provided to people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders;
  • Identifying legislative and regulatory activity which may be required to improve existing service systems that support people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders;
  • Identifying methods of improving interagency coordination of services and maximizing the impact and effectiveness of services and agency functions; and,
  • Other matters as deemed appropriate by the Board. 
The Board is developing recommendations in these areas, with concentration on a variety of topics laid out in their first report, and is seeking input into what these recommendations should be.  Read more and register to attend a forum  here.
New Mental Health Teaching Requirement Starts in Fall

Schools across the state will be required to teach about mental health as part of a broader health curriculum beginning next school year.   The new mandate was set forth in legislation passed last year.

The Board of Regents on Monday was presented with proposed regulations to enact the state law by adding mental health into the state's health education mandate.

School districts' health program will be required to cover the "several dimensions of health," which now include mental health, and must "be designed to enhance student understanding, attitudes and behaviors that promote health, well-being and human dignity," according to the proposed regulation.

A committee of mental health experts, state officials and health educators is working to develop a model curriculum document and other recommendations for how schools can integrate mental health into lessons.  Read more here.
The Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors advances public policies and awareness for people with mental illness, chemical dependency and developmental disabilities.  We are a statewide membership organization that consists of the Commissioner/ Director of each of the state's 57 county mental hygiene departments and the mental hygiene department of the City of New York.