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October 20, 2017

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

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Francine Sinkoff, Editor

'Hub' Drug Treatment Courts Designated in Westchester

NYS to pay $3 million per year for Broome drug treatment center

Offenders with Genetic Mental Illness Judged More Harshly

How the U.S. Army Redesigned Its Mental Health System

Buprenorphine, Methadone Combined With CNS Depressants May Lead to SAEs

Educators Employ Strategies To Help Kids With Anxiety Return To School

Psychologists develop new model that links emotions and mental health
New Whiteboard Video - Best Practices in DSRIP Year 3

The Medicaid Redesign Team recently released a new video in its whiteboard series. In the video titled, " Best Practices in DSRIP Year 3," New York State Medicaid Director, Jason Helgerson, describes best practices currently happening among Performing Provider Systems (PPS) in DSRIP Year 3. Key categories include establishing an innovation fund, adopting best practices with data, addressing social determinates of health, adopting a regional approach to crisis intervention, and mobilizing around high priority community health needs. He also gives a tangible example for each of the best practices. 

Click here to view a  supplemental document that gives additional examples from all 25 PPS, of innovative ways they are changing New York's healthcare delivery system.
DSRIP Networks Create Innovation Funds for Community Providers

At least 10 of the state's 25 performing-provider systems have set up funds to accelerate the flow of DSRIP money to community-based providers in their networks. The hospitals and other institutions leading performing-provider systems have been criticized in the past for being slow to distribute money from the $7.4 billion Medicaid-reform initiative to community-based organizations.

The state Health Department highlighted the creation of these so-called innovation funds in a recent presentation on best practices for DSRIP year three, which began April 1.
The size and structure of the funds vary. Most of the performing-provider systems are distributing the money through a competitive RFP. Bronx Partners for Healthy Communities allocated $5.7 million to its innovation fund for DSRIP year three. Organizations in its network can receive up to $250,000 for projects in five focus areas: IT, social determinants of health, communications, performance improvement and new payment models.

Meanwhile, the Nassau Queens PPS established a much smaller $265,000 innovation fund to engage up to 27 community-based organizations by the end of DSRIP year three. Rather than making the money available through an RFP, it will distribute the funds through contracts with community-based organizations for doing such things as attending trainings, making referrals and holding community forums, according to the Health Department's summary of the innovation funds.

Downstate performing provider systems that have created innovation funds include the New York-Presbyterian Performing Provider System, the Montefiore Hudson Valley Collaborative, Bronx Partners for Healthy Communities, Bronx Health Access and the Nassau Queens PPS.

-- Crain's Health Pulse


October 24, 12 - 1 pm, National Council for Behavioral Health

October 24, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Behavioral Health

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

October 30, 12:30 - 2 pm, CHCS

November 7, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

November 9, 2 - 3:15 pm, Stepping Up

November 16, 2 - 3:15 pm, Stepping Up



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


Officers, Chairs & Regional Reps Call
November 1:  8 am

Office Closed - Veterans' Day
November 10

Directors & Executive Committee Combined Meeting
November 15:  9:30 - 12:30 pm

Children & Families Committee Meeting
November 21:  11:30 am - 1 pm,  GTM

Office Closed - Thanksgiving
November 23 & 24

Mental Hygiene Planning Committee Meeting
November 28:  1 - 3 pm,  GTM

Contact CLMHD for all Call In and Go To Meeting information, 518.462.9422 
Washington Post / 60 Minutes Investigation:  The Drug Industry's Triumph Over the DEA

In April 2016, at the height of the deadliest drug epidemic in U.S. history, Congress effectively stripped the Drug Enforcement Administration of its most potent weapon against large drug companies suspected of spilling prescription narcotics onto the nation's streets.

By then, the opioid war had claimed 200,000 lives, more than three times the number of U.S. military deaths in the Vietnam War. 
Overdose deaths continue to rise. There is no end in sight.

A handful of members of Congress, allied with the nation's major drug distributors, prevailed upon the DEA and the Justice Department to agree to a more industry-friendly law, undermining efforts to stanch the flow of pain pills, according to an investigation by The Washington Post and "60 Minutes." The DEA had opposed the effort for years.

The law was the crowning achievement of a multifaceted campaign by the drug industry to weaken aggressive DEA enforcement efforts against drug distribution companies that were supplying corrupt doctors and pharmacists who peddled narcotics to the black market.  Read more here.
New York State Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson Announces Payment Schedules For New York Public And Safety Net Hospitals

New York State Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson last week released letters to CEOs of New York Public and Safety Net Hospitals following Congress' failure to reinstate the Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital Payments on October 1, 2017. The federal government's failure to act has resulted in a federal funding cut of $2.6 billion to the state's public hospitals, which provide critical care to millions of our most vulnerable citizens across New York.
New York State Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson said, "The Federal DSH program's current funding level was cut on October 1. Some in Congress hope to restore the program, but the state must operate on the current law. DOB and DOH, working with outside financial consultants, have completed a preliminary analysis of the DSH program. This final review of hospitals which are heavily dependent on DSH is expected to be completed by December 1, 2017.  Read more here.
NYTimes:  A Gun to His Head as a Child. In Prison as an Adult.
Image result for A Gun to His Head as a Child. In Prison as an Adult.
LEBANON, Conn. - Rob Sullivan still remembers the gun and the sound of his mother's high-pitched pleas. Two thieves had burst into his parents' Hartford home. Demanding his father's dope stash, one of the men placed a gun to Rob's right temple. "Just give it to them," his mother begged his father.

He was 6 years old.

The incident, charred in his memory, was an early trauma among many he recalls from his childhood. He watched his father beat his mother for not having dinner ready on time or for not cleaning the house, he said. Often, she fought back. Sometimes when he got home, his parents were too drunk or high to let him in. Truancy charges landed him in juvenile detention in his early teens.

"Chaotic - there is no other way to describe my childhood," he said. "I always felt alone."

Given his history, it perhaps comes as no surprise that he has spent as much of his adult life in prison and in drug rehab as he has spent out.  Read more here.
Opportunity to Apply for Sequential Intercept Mapping (SIM) Workshops Focusing on Reentry and Community Corrections

SAMHSA's GAINS Center is currently soliciting applications from communities interested in developing integrated strategies to better identify and respond to the needs of adults with co-occurring mental and substance use disorders in contact with the criminal justice system.  Sequential Intercept Mapping (SIM) workshops are designed to allow local, multidisciplinary teams of people from jurisdictions to facilitate collaboration and to identify and discuss ways in which barriers between the criminal justice, mental health, and substance use systems can be reduced and to begin development of integrated local plans.

This year's solicitation targets communities interested in focusing specifically on Intercepts 4 (Reentry) and 5 (Community Corrections) of the Sequential Intercept Model. Applications should emphasize gaps and opportunities at these intercepts. Additionally, workshop participants are expected to be drawn, in large part, from agencies with responsibilities at these intercepts. Administrators from jails, state correctional agencies, community corrections, behavioral health treatment provider agencies and organizations, housing authorities, Social Security, and Medicaid are essential participants in the workshop.

SAMHSA's GAINS Center will offer this workshop free of charge in selected communities between January and August 2018. There are no fees for registration, tuition, or materials associated with these workshops. The GAINS Center will pay all costs associated with pre- and post-workshop coordination, conference calls, and facilitator time and travel.

To apply for a 2018 SIM workshop, please download the solicitation and submit a completed application form no later than November 10, 2017.

As recognition of the critical role that social determinants play in health and quality of life has grown, partnerships between health care and human service organizations to address them are proliferating. Little is known, however, about the factors that contribute to the success of those partnerships, or their prevailing challenges - important insights for organizations considering whether and how to collaborate.
With support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Partnership for Healthy Outcomes: Bridging Community-Based Human Services and Health Care is shedding light on this area of opportunity. Led by Nonprofit Finance Fund, the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS), and the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, this initiative  examined  lessons from 200
cross-sector collaborations that serve low-income and other vulnerable populations, identified through a national  Request for Information.

From among these 200, CHCS interviewed health care and human service organization leaders of four successful partnerships - r ead more here .
Congressman Paul Tonko Introduces Legislation to Prevent Overdose Deaths,  Improve Care 
Transitions for Individuals Reentering Community

Last week, Rep. Paul Tonko (D-NY) introduced H.R. 4005, the Medicaid Reentry Act, a bill that would provide states with the flexibility to restart Medicaid coverage for eligible incarcerated individuals up to 30 days prior to their release.
Recent research indicates that individuals who are released back into the community post-incarceration are roughly eight times more likely to die of an overdose in the first two weeks post-release compared to other times. The risk of overdose is elevated during this period due to reduced physiological tolerance for opioids among the incarcerated population, a lack of effective addiction treatment options while incarcerated and poor care transitions back into the community. Allowing states to restart Medicaid benefits prior to release will dovetail with innovative reentry programs already being implemented in communities across the country and would give individuals reentering society a fighting chance to live a healthier, drug-free life.
Changing Accounting Rules & The Shift To Value-Based Reimbursement

Come this December, publicly traded companies and organizations with publicly traded debt will have to comply with new revenue recognition rules adopted by the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board and the International Accounting Standards Board-known as ASC 606. The purpose of the rules is to create more transparency for investors to compare year-over-year financial results.

While the rules sound straightforward in their initial presentation, the application of these new rules by health and human service organizations as they are entering into more value-based and performance-based reimbursement arrangements presents some unique challenges.

The big issue is identifying how outcomes will be aligned with revenue (and revenue estimates when contracts span more than one accounting period), and demonstrating that policies, procedures, and systems are in place so that those estimates are reliable.   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.