September 1, 2022

Governor Hochul Announces $2.3 Million in Addiction Services Support

Governor Kathy Hochul on Tuesday announced $2.3 million to support addiction prevention efforts and enhance access to transportation services for treatment. Administered by the Office of Addiction Services and Supports, the funding will help establish four prevention coalitions in New York City and enhance non-medical transportation services for individuals having difficulty accessing addiction treatment in Western New York and the Finger Lakes.  

The funding will provide a total of $1.8 million to establish four New York City-based addiction prevention coalitions to better engage vulnerable populations and isolated communities in developing and implementing environmental change and prevention strategies. Read more here.

Additional article of interest: New laws are meant to help people with addictions to access care

State Department of Health Warns the Public in Central New York About Alarming Increase In Opioid Overdoses

The New York State Department of Health has been made aware of a rapid increase in opioid-related overdoses in the Central New York region. Other areas of the state should also be aware and take precautions. These overdoses are likely linked to fentanyl, which is a powerful opioid that is often added to other drugs like heroin, as well as, cocaine, crystal methamphetamine and illicitly manufactured pills, including benzodiazepines and other psychostimulants like Molly and MDMA.

Fentanyl is 50-100 times stronger than heroin and has contributed to an increase in opioid overdose deaths in recent years. Nearly half of all overdose deaths in New York State now involve fentanyl. Read more here.

Additional articles of interest: A Case for Permanent Adoption of Expanded Telehealth Services and Prescribing Flexibilities for Opioid Use Disorder

On International Overdose Awareness Day, HHS announces awarding of $79.1 million in overdose prevention grants

Treatment Deserts Fray New York's Capacity to Deal with the Opioid Crisis

On the same day that New York state and local health officials raised concerns over a spike in opioid-related overdoses in parts of Central New York, a presentation made by the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) laid bare several “treatment deserts” in upstate New York where overdose prevention services are not available.

At a meeting of the Opioid Settlement Advisory Board, OASAS indicated there are treatment deserts of various kinds in counties throughout upstate. Read more here.

Additional article of interest: Opioid Settlement Board makes progress on recommendation report

Governor Hochul Announces $4 Million to Increase Mental Health Workforce Diversity

Governor Kathy Hochul last week announced $4 million in federal funding to support underrepresented students entering or enrolled in mental health degree programs at State University of New York or City University of New York campuses. Through a partnership with the New York State Office of Mental Health, SUNY and CUNY will each be provided $2 million to support tuition assistance, paid internships, and direct stipends for minority and multilingual students. Read more here.

This Teen Was Prescribed 10 Psychiatric Drugs. She’s Not Alone.

One morning in the fall of 2017, Renae Smith, a high school freshman on Long Island, N.Y., could not get out of bed, overwhelmed at the prospect of going to school. In the following days, her anxiety mounted into despair. “I should have been happy,” she later wrote. “But I cried, screamed and begged the universe or whatever godly power to take away the pain of a thousand men that was trapped inside my head.”

Intervention for her depression and anxiety came not from the divine but from the pharmaceutical industry. The following spring, a psychiatrist prescribed Prozac. The medication offered a reprieve from her suffering, but the effect dissipated, so she was prescribed an additional antidepressant, Effexor. Read more here.

Additional article of interest: ‘The Best Tool We Have’ for Self-Harming and Suicidal Teens

At 988 Call Centers, Crisis Counselors Offer Empathy - and Juggle Limited Resources

On a Friday evening at a call center in southeastern Pennsylvania, Michael Colluccio stirs his hot tea, puts on his headset, and starts up his computer. On the screen, calls are coming in to the suicide prevention lifeline from around the state. The 38-year old Colluccio says he knows what it's like to be on the other end of one of those calls.

"So I had a suicide attempt when I was about 10, 11 years old," Colluccio says. "And we do get callers who are about that age, or quite young, and they are going through similar stressors." Read more here.

New York Officials: Planning Needed for People with Developmental Disabilities

New York officials are working to develop a years-long strategy to aid the long-term planning needs for some of the state's most vulnerable residents. State lawmakers and agency leaders pointed to an ongoing housing crisis facing the community as one of its most pressing needs. Assemblywoman Sarah Clark, along with Assemblywoman Jen Lunsford and Office for People with Developmental Disabilities Commissioner Kerri Neifeld on Tuesday met with family members and community advocates to discuss the issue. Read more here.

Additional article of interest: Helping People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Get Dental Care

Making Emergency Rooms OUD-Ready

The emergency room often is considered the front door for treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD), but access to standardized care has been limited in part by the stigma surrounding addiction. A partnership of three organizations, funded by the Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE), is seeing success in its efforts to expand access to OUD treatment in emergency departments.

“The emergency room for many individuals is the first contact with health professionals after an overdose,” says Ken Shatzkes, FORE’s program director. “It’s an opportunity to engage with an individual, connect them with social services and remove some of the stigma so that when they do want to participate in treatment, they’ll feel more comfortable doing so. A lot of it has to do with that first contact point.” Read more here.

Relias Survey Highlights Trends, Gaps in Crisis Training For Behavioral Health and I/DD Professionals

Relias, trusted partner to more than 11,000 healthcare organizations and 4.5 million caregivers, has released a new report that identifies areas of improvement for crisis prevention and intervention (CPI) training among behavioral health and intellectual and developmental disability (IDD) professionals. The 2022 Crisis Prevention and Intervention Training Report, based on a survey of 2,952 behavioral health and IDD professionals, examined how providers train their staff on CPI techniques, which are vital to mitigating crisis situations with clients. Read more here.

Proven Models Help Behavioral Health Operators Overcome Carve-Out, Data-Sharing Challenges in VBC

The road to value-based care (VBC) contracting in the behavioral health sector is slow moving. In order for VBC to evolve in the behavioral health sector, both payers and providers need a seat at the table. Operators provide clinical expertise and troves of data about the patient experience. And these assets could put providers in the driver’s seat when it comes to the future of VBC in behavioral health, industry stakeholders told Behavioral Health Business.

“Health plans, traditionally, have seen enough data in a member-centric view to have a sense of spend and utilization patterns,” Samir Malik, co-founder and CEO of serious mental illness patient-engagement company firsthand, told BHB. Read more here.

BROOME: Health experts in Broome County say August has seen a ‘very high’ amount of overdoses

CENTRAL NY: The Central New York Community Foundation Distributed More than $1 Million to Local Nonprofits

CHAUTAUQUA: Local System of Care Present Training Series for National Training and Technical Assistance Center for Child, Youth and Family Mental Health

CHAUTAUQUA: County to spend $500K on court-ordered evaluations

CHENANGO: NPD Suspects Fentanyl In Two Recent Overdose Deaths

ERIE: BestSelf Behavioral Health 24/7 Virtual Treatment Centers Helping Combat Opioid Crisis

ERIE: Erie County Department of Mental Health looking for input on new app design

ERIE: Erie County turns to billboards to help prevent overdose deaths

ERIE: Congressman Higgins Announces $500,000 in Federal Funding Awarded to Support Opioid Training for First Responders in Erie County

FRANKLIN: Citizen Advocates hosts educational forum on ‘Duty to Warn’

MADISON: Madison Central School District Receives NYS Mental Health Grant

MONROE: Advocating for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities

NASSAU: Senator Brooks Provides Funding Grant in Show of Support For Nassau County’s Disabled Community

NORTH COUNTRY: Fentanyl is now in nearly all illegal drugs in the North Country. Here's why that's so dangerous

ONEIDA: Oneida County Overdose Response Team Issues Spike Alert

ONTARIO: FLCC unveils new, expanded nursing school facilities

OTSEGO: Bassett Medical Center receives $82M grant to expand access to care

ST. LAWRENCE: Governor Hochul Announces Opening of $5.2 Million Supportive Housing Development in St. Lawrence County

SUFFOLK: School of Social Welfare’s Inaugural CASAC Class Receives Its Certification 

TOMPKINS: 988 Lifeline Launched By TC Mental Health & Suicide Prevention & Crisis Services

Counties Urge State to Address Need for Secure Housing for Violent Teens

Leaders of organizations representing New York county governments and probation departments say implementation of a law raising the age of criminal responsibility to 18 has resulted in “severely negative consequences.”

“The lack of specialized secure detention beds across the state is putting our communities, affected youth, and the public at risk,” said Martha Sauerbrey, president of the New York Association of Counties; Luci Welch, resident of the state Council of Probation Administrators; and Marc Molinaro, president of the County Executives Association, in a recent letter to Gov. Kathy Hochul. Read more here.

Additional article of interest: Lawmaker wants Medicaid reimbursement for violence prevention

NY School Districts Should Have Uniform Safety Guidance, State Teachers Union Says

The state should issue uniform school safety guidance for all districts, from single points of entry to lockdown procedures, while establishing staffing ratios for school social workers, counselors and psychologists, according to a new report from the New York State United Teachers. In the wake of the shooting in May at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 students and two teachers dead, the union Tuesday released a report detailing local, state and federal policy recommendations to address violence in schools. Read more here.

Advocates Push to Center Youth Mental Health as New School Year Begins

At a virtual rally on Sunday, parents, young people and advocates in the city and across the state shared stories about the impact of the pandemic and renewed calls for elected officials to invest more in behavioral health programs and services for children and teens, which experts say have been underfunded for years and are now at a breaking point, with increased demand spurred by the coronavirus crisis.

As a new school year kicks off next week—the third since the pandemic began—local advocates and families are calling for New York lawmakers to prioritize mental health resources for youth, pointing to the impact of COVID-19 on a system they say was strained across the state well before the crisis. Read more here.

Recovery is For Every Person, Every Family, and Every Community

This September, the New York Council on Problem Gambling (NYCPG) celebrates National Recovery Month. Recovery is for everyone: every person, every family, and every community. Along with Faces & Voices of Recovery, this month is a time to celebrate the strides made by those in recovery from substance misuse, mental health issues, and problem gambling.

Problem gambling is often a “hidden addiction”; therefore, we must make it a priority to talk about, prevent, educate, and screen for issues. We know that many people can be impacted by problem gambling, including family members and communities. It takes the advocacy, support, and awareness of everyone to make sure that those looking for recovery have many pathways to get there. Read more here.

Legal Action Center Study: Costs to add substance abuse coverage to Medicare to only increase spending by nominal amount

New York Times: Fentanyl Test Strips Are ‘Catching On’ Among Cocaine Users

MindSiteNews: Ketamine Clinics Expand, Concerns Grow About Staffing, Protocols and Take-it-at-Home Models


Using PSYCKES Quality Indicator Reports

September 1, 1 - 2 pm, OMH

Saving Our Children: Current Considerations for Preventing Suicide in Children and Adolescents

September 6, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Barriers and Facilitators of Jail-Based Medication-Assisted Treatment Programs: Setting up for Success

September 7, 2:30 - 4 pm, SAMHSA's GAINS Center

Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders in Rural Areas

September 8, 3 - 4 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

988 Celebration Webinar

September 12, 3 - 4 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

988: What’s The Scoop? A Discussion With Experts In Suicide Prevention & Mental Health

September 13, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

Kinship Families Affected by Substance Use and Mental Health Disorders

September 14, 1 - 2 pm, SAMHSA

DLTSS Training Series: Building on Successes Toward Implementation of EVV for HHCS

September 14, 1:30 - 3 pm, CMS

A Patient-Centered Complex Care Research Agenda: Recommendations for Collective Action

September 15, 12 - 1:30 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

America’s Growing Drug Overdose Crisis

September 15, 1 - 2 pm, NIHCM Foundation

Lessons Learned in Community-Based Recovery Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic

September 15, 3 - 4:30 pm, Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts

Fostering Connection Across the Lifespan: 2022 New York State Suicide Prevention Conference

September 20 - 22, Virtual - OMH SPCNYS

Implementing Tech-Enabled Innovation in Medicaid Managed Care: Opportunities to Advance Health Equity and Quality

September 20, 1 - 2 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

Using Local Innovation to Address Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice Programs

September 20, 2 - 3:30 pm, CSG Justice Center

Consent, Emergency, Quality Flag: PSYCKES Levels of Access

September 21, 10 - 11 am, OMH

Defining, Evaluating, & Implementing Digital Health Tools

September 21, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

Quality Matters: An Update From NCQA On Behavioral Health Measurement Trends

September 27, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

Alcohol Use Disorder: Our Nation’s Hidden Epidemic

September 28, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Decreasing Disparities and Improving Outcomes: A Closer Look at Standardization Tools Around Service Intensity

September 29, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

NYS Justice Center Code of Conduct Train-the-Trainer

October 4, 9:30 am - 12:30 pm, NYSJC

NYS Justice Center Code of Conduct Train-the-Trainer

November 9, 9:30 am - 12:30 pm, NYSJC



CLMHD Office Closed - Labor Day

September 5

CLMHD Executive Committee Meeting

September 7: 8 - 9 am

Addiction Services & Recovery Committee Meeting

September 8: 11 am - 12 pm

Mental Health Committee Meeting

September 8: 3 - 4 pm

LGU Clinic Operators Meeting

September 13: 10 - 11:30 am

Children & Families Committee Meeting

September 20: 11:30 am - 1 pm

CLMHD Membership Call

September 28: 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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