December 15, 2022

With NYC Plan for Mentally Ill, Hospitals Face Complex Task

New York City’s latest plan to keep mentally ill people from languishing in public is billed as a common-sense strategy to get them help.

By encouraging police officers and city medics to take more psychologically disturbed people to hospitals, even if they refuse care, Mayor Eric Adams says he’s humanely tackling a problem instead of looking away. But his policy will have to navigate a legal challenge 

and a cool reception from some city lawmakers. In emergency rooms, psychiatrists must determine whether such patients need hospitalization, perhaps against their will.

It’s no simple decision. Read more here.

Related: For now, judge won't stop NYC mayor's homeless removal plans

Police Have Removed Over 1,300 'Emotionally Disturbed People’ from Transit in 2022; Where Did They Go?

What Happens When Police Show Up for Mental Health Calls?

How Do Nonprofits Feel About Adams' Involuntary Removal Policy?

Ahead of New York City’s coldest months of the year, Mayor Eric Adams has proposed a new legislative agenda addressing concerns over homelessness and mentally ill individuals, calling for systemic changes to health and housing systems. As part of this plan, the Psychiatric Crisis Care Legislative Agenda allows Mobile Crisis Teams to involuntarily hospitalize people they deem unable to care for their well-being due to severe mental illness, even if they pose no threat to themselves or the public. In response to this policy shift, New York's growing network of nonprofits committed to assisting New Yorkers suffering from mental health, substance abuse and homelessness are not fond of the memorandum. Read more here.

Related: Mental health advocates in New York want alternatives to commitment

firsthand Looking to Transform SMI Care by ‘Knocking On Doors’ of Unengaged Patients

Reaching patients with serious mental illness (SMI) has traditionally been a challenge for the medical community. In fact, only 64.5% of patients with SMI received mental health treatment in the past year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). One of the biggest hurdles for the medical community at large is gaining the trust of patients with SMI. A new company, dubbed firsthand, is looking to transform SMI care using a peer-support model to help patients access care. Read more here.

Dying Inside: To End Deaths of Despair, Address the Crisis in Local Jails

Efforts at the local, state, and federal levels have begun a shift toward adopting more public health-oriented approaches in correctional settings, largely driven by an acknowledgement that addressing the health care and treatment needs of incarcerated people can positively impact both these individuals and the overall health of communities. This brief outlines the legal framework on the right to adequate care and treatment for medical, mental health, and substance-related conditions in jails. The brief also highlights the findings of original research on litigation related to deaths in jail custody and provides recommendations for reform.

How a Hotel Was Converted into Housing for Formerly Homeless People

George Karatzidis stood in his new high-rise studio apartment overlooking the city skyline and spread his arms wide.

“This is why I’m alive,” he said, pointing to a spartan metal bed frame with a mattress wrapped in a gray sheet. Mr. Karatzidis, 41, is one of the first residents of the 30-story renovated tower in Dumbo, Brooklyn, one of the richest neighborhoods in the city. Before November, he was homeless.

His building — with nearly 500 units, a gym, computer lab, bike room and a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of Manhattan and the East River — is one of the nation’s largest supportive housing developments. In supportive housing, formerly homeless tenants get permanent housing and access to on-site mental health and support services. Read more here.

How Three Communities are Developing Supportive Housing to Improve Access for People with Behavioral Health Needs Leaving Incarceration

The affordable housing crisis has increased the need for new housing developments in communities across the U.S., particularly for people leaving prison and jail who have behavioral health needs. To support these efforts, some local leaders have started developing

supportive housing, which is an evidence-based intervention that combines affordable housing with wraparound services and has no residency time limit. 

Read more here.

A Major Drugmaker Plans to Sell Overdose-Reversal Nasal Spray Narcan Over the Counter

Drug maker Emergent BioSolutions is seeking approval from the Food and Drug Administration to sell Narcan over the counter, without need for a prescription. The medication, an easy-to-use nasal spray version of the drug naloxone, has a strong track record reversing deadly opioid overdoses, which have soared in recent years largely because of the spread of fentanyl. Read more here.

In Rural America, Deadly Costs of Opioids Outweigh the Dollars Tagged to Address Them

Tim Buck knows by heart how many people died from drug overdoses in his North Carolina county last year: 10. The year before it was 12 — an all-time high. Those losses reverberate deeply in rural Pamlico County, a tightknit community of 12,000 on the state’s eastern shore. Over the past decade, it’s had the highest rate of opioid overdose deaths in North Carolina.

“Most folks know these individuals or know somebody who knows them,” said Buck, the county manager and a lifelong resident, who will proudly tell anyone that four generations of his family have called the area home. “We all feel it and we hate it when our folks hurt.” Read more here.

Related: New Evidence and Resources in Addiction Care: A Brief Resource Review

American Farm Bureau Federation: Opioid Abuse among Rural Adults

New SAMHSA Proposal Relaxes Telehealth Regulations for Methadone, Buprenorphine Treatment

The federal government has proposed a new rule that would allow take-home doses of methadone. It would also let authorized physicians treat patients with buprenorphine and methadone-assisted over telehealth. This comes as the Biden administration continues to prioritize substance use disorder treatment amid the growing rates of drug overdose deaths. The CDC reported a 28% increase in overdose deaths from 2020 to 2021. The proposed changes, which were released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) along with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) on Tuesday, build on some of the treatment flexibilities to come out during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE). Read more here.

BROOME: Broome Reports a Spike in Drug Overdoses

CHEMUNG/SCHUYLER/STEUBEN: New York Announces Funding For Mental Healthcare

CHAUTAUQUA: Inmate Suicide Attempts Have Increased At County Jail

CLINTON: SUNY Plattsburgh investing in student mental health services

CLINTON: Governor Hochul Announces Completion of $24 Million Affordable and Supportive Housing Development in Plattsburgh

DELAWARE: Delaware County says goodbye to four retirees

DELAWARE: Delaware to renovate old mental health building in Walton

DUTCHESS: Dutchess County seeking public input on homeless shelter operator

GENESEE/ORLEANS: GCASA hires Luke Granger as recovery services director

LEWIS: Contract approved for feasibility study on temporary housing facility in Lewis County

NIAGARA: How is Niagara County working to decrease overdose deaths?

NORTH COUNTRY: Supporting first responders’ mental health

NYC: D.A. Bragg Announces $9 Million To Address Mental Health And Substance Abuse

NYC: Governor Hochul Announces Availability of $16 Million to Develop Supportive Housing

NYC: Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams Announce Groundbreaking for Mixed-Use Affordable Housing Development in Brooklyn's East New York

NYC: Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams Announce Start of Construction on $72 Million Mixed-Use Affordable and Supportive Housing Development in the Bronx

ONONDAGA: Crisis in the Classroom: Onondaga County continues to push for clinician in every school

SARATOGA: Peer support team created to help first responders

SCHENECTADY: Ellis Hospital finally reopens inpatient youth mental health unit after six months

ULSTER: Opioid overdose deaths in Ulster County up over 400 percent since 2014

WESTCHESTER: City Officials In Westchester County Help Find Permanent Housing For Homeless Woman

WESTCHESTER: County Executive George Latimer Launches Westchester Tobacco Free Program

When Black Psychiatrists Reach Out to Teens of Color

ATLANTA — Dr. Brittany Stallworth was in fifth grade when she received her first suspension. She and four girlfriends had worn lime-green shirts to school to celebrate the birthday of one of the girls, whose favorite color was green.

“We were accused of promoting gang activity,” Dr. Stallworth recalled recently. They were among just a handful of Black children in their private school outside Detroit. Later that day, at home, her parents warned her: “You have to understand how people are going to interpret things, how you are going to be perceived.”

Two decades later, Dr. Stallworth is a resident in psychiatry at Morehouse School of Medicine, where she is part of a team of mental health specialists that focuses on the needs of low-income children and teenagers of color, groups often overlooked in the ongoing adolescent mental health crisis. Read more here.

Report: Fentanyl overdose rate 25% higher than 2020

A report from USAFacts shows that 70,601 people died from a fentanyl overdose in the US in 2021. The data shows the death rate is 26 times higher than a decade prior. According to the DEA, drug dealers may mix fentanyl with illicit drugs, sometimes without users knowing, and with fentanyl being significantly stronger than other opioids, doses as small as two milligrams can be lethal. USAFacts reports New York ranked in the middle of the U.S. states for fentanyl overdose deaths at the 24th spot. New York had 23.4 fentanyl overdose deaths in 2021. Read more here.

Related: New York State Department of Health Warns New Yorkers About Prevalence of Fentanyl in Opioids, Cocaine, and other Illicit Drugs

As Overdose Deaths Rise, Few Emergency Rooms Offer Addiction Help

Drug Abuse Warning Network: Findings from Drug-Related Emergency Department Visits, 2021

An analysis of final 2021 DAWN data presents: (1) nationally representative weighted estimates, including percent and unadjusted rates per 100,000, for all drug-related emergency department (ED) visits, (2) nationally representative weighted estimates for the top five drugs in drug-related ED visits, (3) the assessment of monthly trends and drugs involved in polysubstance ED visits in a subset of sentinel hospitals, and (4) the identification of drugs new to DAWN’s Drug Reference Vocabulary. Read the findings here.

Avoiding Triggers During the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us. For many it is a time of celebrations and family gatherings. But for those , experiencing a gambling problem, it's also a season of temptations and potential triggers, especially with many opportunities to gamble right at our fingertips. Gambling is very much normalized in today's society. Activities like a card game around the kitchen table, a friendly bet on a sporting event or game, or getting scratch off tickets as a stocking stuffer are just everyday events that can trigger the urge to gamble and potentially impact someone's recovery. Read more here.

Related: NYS Gaming Commission Offers Responsible Gambling Training for Lottery Retailers

Reducing “Avoidable” ED Visits for Mental Health Could Cut Billions in Costs, Improve Patient Outcomes

JAMA: Association of Outpatient Behavioral Health Treatment With Medical and Pharmacy Costs in the First 27 Months Following a New Behavioral Health Diagnosis in the US

Lancet: Service use and costs in adolescents with pain and suicidality: A cross-sectional study

Study: Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training and impact on mental illness and substance use-related stigma among law enforcement

CVS and Walgreens will pay out more than $10 billion in settlement money for their part in fueling the opioid epidemic

What Behavioral Health Providers Need to Know When Negotiating Value-Based Care Contracts with Payers

Psychologists struggle to meet demand amid mental health crisis: 2022 COVID-19 Practitioner Impact Survey


Improving Equity in Integrated Care Services Among Latinx Migrant Communities

December 15, 12 - 1 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Communities Talk About: New Communities Talk Cycle in 2023

December 15, 1 - 2 pm, SAMHSA

Working with Medicare Webinar - State Contracting with D-SNPs: Using D-SNPs to Integrate Care for Dually Eligible Individuals

December 15, 1 - 2 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

Integrating Bridge Clinics into Emergency Departments to Facilitate Access to Opioid Use Disorder Care

December 15, 1 - 2:15 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

How Treatment Court Professionals Can Effectively Build Relationships and Interact with Behavioral Health and Court Treatment Teams to Better Serve Justice-Involved Clients

December 15, 3 - 4 pm, SMI Advisor

Community Engagement: An Essential Component of an Effective and Equitable Substance Use Prevention System

December 16, 2 - 3 pm, SAMHSA

Reducing Jail Populations: Decreasing Pretrial Length of Stay by Improving Court Proceedings and Pre

January 5, 2 - 3 pm, NACo

New Medicaid Opportunities for Financing Health-Related Social Needs: A Conversation With States

January 9, 2023, 3 - 4 pm, Manatt Health



Mental Hygiene Planning Committee Meeting

December 15: 1 - 3 pm

Developmental Disabilities Committee Meeting

December 22: 1 - 2:30 pm

CLMHD Office Closed - Christmas

December 26


CLMHD Office Closed - New Year's Day

January 2

Executive Committee Meeting

January 4: 8 - 9 am

LGU Clinic Director Call

January 10: 10 - 11:30 am

Addiction Services & Recovery Committee Meeting

January 12: 11 am - 12 pm

Mental Health Committee Meeting

January 12: 3 - 4 pm

CLMHD Office Closed - MLK Jr. Day

January 16

Children & Families Committee Meeting

January 17: 11:30 am - 1 pm

CLMHD Membership Call

January 18: 9 - 10:30 am

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.

Affiliated with the NYS Association of Counties (NYSAC)
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