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September 21, 2017

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

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Francine Sinkoff, Editor

Women and Opioids: Inside the Deadliest Drug Epidemic in American History

Millions Flowing to Agencies for Mental Health, Substance Abuse Aid

Five health centers in the region will receive nearly $1 million to help fight substance abuse and improve access to mental health services.

The funds are part of a $10.6 million allocation to 62 health centers across New York from the federal government awarded through the Department of Health and Human Services.

Local sites will receive $175,000 apiece: Jericho Road Community Health Center, The Chautauqua Center, Community Health Center of Buffalo, Neighborhood Health Center, Oak Orchard Community Health Center and the Southern Tier Community Health Center in Olean.  Read more here.
Beacon Health Options is the First Managed Behavioral Health Organization to Partner with Project ECHO

Beacon Health Options (Beacon) announced today at a congressional briefing on the opioid epidemic that it is the first managed behavioral health organization to become an official partner to one of the most innovative health care practice models in the nation - Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes).

Beacon's multi-disciplinary clinical team serves as an ECHO hub to train community-based practitioners on medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for treating opioid use disorder (OUD). With two hubs launched in August that serve  Connecticut and  Florida, Beacon expects to have two more in service by the end of 2017.  Read more here.

September 28, 12 - 12:30 pm, PsychU

October 5, 3 - 4 pm, CHCS

October 12, 2 - 3:15 pm, Stepping Up 

October 19, 2 - 3:15 pm, Stepping Up

October 24, 3:30 - 5 pm, National Academy for State Health Policy

October 25, 9:15 - 10:45 am, National Academy for State Health Policy

November 7, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU


Officers, Chairs & Regional Reps Call
October 4:  8 - 9 am

Developmental Disabilities Committee Meeting
October 5:  1 - 2:30 pm, GTM

Office Closed - Columbus Day
October 9

Children & Families Committee Meeting
October 17:  11:30 am - 1 pm,  GTM

Mental Hygiene Planning Committee Meeting
October 17:  1 - 3 pm,  GTM

Directors & Executive Committee Combined Meeting
October 18:  9:30 - 12:30 pm

OMH Agency Meeting 
October 24:  9 am - 12 pm
44 Holland Ave., Albany

OASAS Agency Meeting
October 24:  1 - 4 pm
1450 Western Ave., Albany

Contact CLMHD for all Call In and Go To Meeting information, 518.462.9422 
NYS Office of Mental Health: $3.5 Million Federal Suicide Prevention Grant

The Office of Mental Health announced New York is the only state in nation to have received a grant award from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Zero Suicide grant program. The award of $3.5 million over five years will help implement and strengthen the state's suicide prevention efforts.

The federal grant award was announced by Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan during the agency's annual Suicide Prevention Conference, which drew about 350 participants to the Capital Region.

SAMHSA received more than 120 applications from eligible parties, which included states and U.S. territories, Indian tribes or tribal organizations, community-based primary care or behavioral health care organizations, emergency departments and local public health agencies. Only three applications were approved for awards; New York was the only state to win an award, the largest of $3.5 million.  Read more here.
NQF Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Project 2016-2017 Final Report Available

The NQF Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Project 2016-2017 final report is now available.  Now completed, the  purpose of this project was to identify and recommend measure sets in four program areas for the Medicaid Innovation Accelerator Program (IAP), which supports states' ongoing efforts related to payment and delivery system reforms. The program areas align with National Quality Strategy (NQS) priorities and address high-impact conditions. They include: Reducing Substance Use Disorders, Promoting Community Integration through Community-Based Long-Term Services and Supports, Improving Care for Medicaid Beneficiaries with Complex Care Needs and High Costs, and Supporting Physical and Mental Health Integration.  Read more here.
NYS OASAS Announces Nearly $1 Million to Connect Families to Substance Use Disorder Support Services

The New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) last week announced that nearly $1 million has been awarded to 10 providers to add Family Support Navigators throughout the state.  
Family Support Navigators help families struggling with substance use disorders understand the progression of addiction and how to navigate insurance and treatment systems. The program is funded by OASAS.

Expanding Family Support Navigator services builds on Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's multi-pronged approach to combatting the opioid epidemic that is damaging communities across New York State. Family Support Navigators help people and their families better understand the progression of addiction, provide guidance on how to navigate insurance issues and offer information on how to access treatment services.  Read more here.
Population Health:  Providers Still Struggling to Build Community Connections

The slow move away from a fee-for-service payment model toward value-based reimbursement in recent years has for many healthcare providers been a key incentive behind their focus on exploring different ways to improve the health of the communities they serve.

For organizations like New York City-based Montefiore Health System, population health management has been a part of its business model and care delivery strategy for the past two decades. The health system began taking on risk-based contracting for patient care in 1996, and now has more than 20% of its net patient revenue tied to such payment models.

Having a financial stake in keeping patients out of the hospital has helped build a trusting relationship between the provider and community stakeholders, said Nicole Hollingsworth, assistant vice president at Montefiore, adding that those relationships have been the foundation for effective preventive health and wellness outreach.
They are relationships that the system remains vigilant in maintaining even after so many years.  Read more here.
Improving Health Care Access in Rural Communities through Community Paramedicine

Community paramedicine is an emerging and rapidly evolving field that can help improve health care access in rural communities. Community paramedicine involves Emergency Medical Service (EMS) providers operating in expanded roles in an effort to " connect underutilized resources to underserved populations." Community paramedicine can be particularly impactful in rural communities as a way to reach geographically-isolated areas and to fill gaps due to shortages of primary care providers.

A core purpose of community paramedicine is to provide needed health care services to underserved patients  on location to help reduce unnecessary hospitalizations and emergency department visits. Without access to primary care, patients may forego or delay primary care and other services that could help them maintain their health and avoid costly hospitalizations. Read more here.
FDA Permits Marketing of the First Mobile Medical Application for Substance Use Disorder

The FDA has permitted marketing of the first mobile medical application to help treat substance use disorders (SUD). The Reset application (Pear Therapeutics) is intended to be used with outpatient therapy to treat alcohol, cocaine, marijuana, and stimulant SUDs. The application is not intended to be used to treat opioid dependence.

The Reset device is a mobile medical application system containing a patient application and clinician dashboard. The device delivers cognitive behavioral therapy to patients to teach the user skills that aid in the treatment of SUD and are intended to increase abstinence from substance abuse and increase retention in outpatient therapy programs. The system is intended to be used in conjunction with outpatient therapy and in addition to a contingency management system, a widely used program for treating SUD that uses a series of incentives to reward patients for adherence to their treatment program.  Read more here.
Alcohol Abuse Is Rising Among Older Adults

In the summer, Henry Wrenn-Meleck likes to sit on the stoop of his building on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, observing the passing urban parade.

One day in late July, "one of my neighbors could see something was wrong," he recently recalled. "I was sort of rolling around, obviously in a lot of pain. He said, 'I have to call 911,' and he did."

Mr. Wrenn-Meleck, 63, an independent music publisher and dealer in rare guitars, spent three weeks in a hospital, being treated for trauma from a fall he does not recall. But the underlying problem was "40 years of being a very serious alcoholic," he said. "My body finally said no more."  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.