In This Issue:

Why are More American Teens Suffering from Anxiety?

C ourts that Save Opoid Victims' Family's Life

Navigating the Mental Health System with Dual Diagnosis 

Largest Twin Study To-Date Pins 80% Schizophrenia Risk on Heritability   

Domestic Violence: What Is It?
By Lindsay Simon, Executive Director, A Balanced Life

Medication Assisted Treatment Works! By K. Eckart -Assistant Director, EDC H&HSA

Health Risks: 4 MD's in El Dorado County provide public comment about Cannabis

Largest Twin Study To-Date Pins 80% Schizophrenia Risk on Heritability   

Beyond Beds: National Report


Law Enforcement Partnerships Shine! 

Weekly Art at EDC BH
Genetics and Family History: Do you Know your Family History of Serious Mental Illness and Addiction?

Long-Lasting-Injectables - Success

Thank you Law Enforcement

Select "Key Takeaways" from Behavioral Health Commission meeting

Local Mental Health Events  - and BBRF new forums

Interested in Volunteering?

NAMI El Dorado County: Board of Director's Meeting

Find us on Facebook: NAMI El Dorado County
Awesome event for any cause but how fabulous is it that all proceeds for these events go to "Mental and Behavioral Health Services!"

Thank you Barton Foundation for your leadership in improving services and supports in the community

warmlinesNAMI El Dorado County provides 3 Warm-lines:
Non-judgemental support to members of the community that need education, support or advocacy by volunteer NAMI El Dorado County leaders who share their time and passion for helping others.

WS: NAMI El Dorado County 
  Warm-line: (530) 306-7710

SLT: NAMI El Dorado County 
  Warm-line: 650-740-5776

Spanish Warm-line in SLT: 775-407-0306.  

Partners in California: on-line resources from

Text "NAMI" to 741741

Heartfelt Gratitude for Community Support

Thank You Community Leaders
 Thank you to Deputy Vic De Leon and Deputy Kyle Jones for your informative presentation to our NAMI class! Your knowledge and dedication is much appreciated by NAMI Families!!

Thank you to Don the Baker at  Cakes by the Lake for the delicious assorted pastries and fresh assorted bagels you shared with our NAMI Family-to-Family class - what a treat!   And your homemade coconut cream pie - oh my! Simply fabulous treat.

Thank you Union Mine High School freshman English teacher, Brigette Bergman for inviting NAMI to raise awareness with the more than 100 freshman students on 10-Oct-2017 global mental health awareness day.

Thank you  Lake Tahoe Community College and Tina Miller for your leadership with  NAMI On Campus    Thank you FKCE at LTCC for your continued support of NAMI El Dorado County.

  Thank you to Natalie Collins, South Tahoe High and all the counselors and teachers, and new principal supporting our new NAMI On Campus (which starts 6-Nov-2017)

Thank you Barton Foundation for making Mental and Behavioral Health the theme for this season's fund-raising gala.  May other neighboring hospitals replicate your leadership in incremental improvements in services/supports.


  Thank you to Blue Dog Pizza  at Sierra/Lake Tahoe Blvd  for fresh and yummy pizza supporting our Family-to-Family graduation celebration.    After 32-hours of instruction this was a welcome celebration lunch treat!
 Thank you Elder Options for facilitating our continued in-service outreach to the community.


NAMISupportGroupsNAMI Family Support Group Meetings - 3 in El Dorado County:  
These are designed for family members and/or caregivers/friends supporting a loved one living with a mental health condition.  The group provides a safe supportive environment where family members and caregivers can talk frankly about their challenges and help one another through group wisdom.   These groups provide empathetic support for those dealing with crisis and the emotional overload that is so much a part of having someone you love living with a mental illness.  You can come, share or just listen, get useful practical information or a hug from others who understand.  This group is for families and friend's of those living with a mental health condition.   No cost to attend.

South Lake Tahoe: NAMI Family Support Group:  meets the second Tuesday monthly from 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Location: South Lake Tahoe Library located at 1000 Rufus Allen Road 
Group co-facilitators: Alan and Jeanne (650)-740-5776 -
Remaining 2017 dates: 14-Nov, 12-Dec

Western Slope: NAMI Family Support group: meets the first Tuesday monthly at 7:00 p.m.
Location: is The County Governmment Center, 330 Fair Lane, Conference room C, Placerville
Group facilitator: Jan Melnicoe
Remaining 2017 dates:  07-Nov, 05-Dec

El Dorado Hills: NAMI Family Support Group  
Location: EDH Raleys Event Center, 3935 Park Dr., El Dorado Hills from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m. 
Remaining 2017 dates:   20-Nov, 18-Dec
Group co-Facilitators: Jannell Clanton (530) 333-5803 and Lauraleen Patterson (916) 955-1666

3 Important "NAMI" Dates in South Lake Tahoe in November: 
  • 02-Nov 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. MHSA Community Meeting in the Aspen Room at LTCC.  NAMI is hosting this public get-together so NAMI families and friends can share perspective with county MHSA leaders.  Let your voice be heard.
  • 15-Nov from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.: "NAMI Family & Friends" a 4-hour seminar at LTCC in E-100.  Click here to register.   
2 Important "NAMI" Dates on the Western Slope in November/December:
  • 09-Dec from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. "NAMI Family & Friends" a 4-hour seminar: Location: 345 Fair Lane, Placerville  
  • 07-Nov 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. MHSA Community Meeting, County Government Center, 330 Fair Lane, Conf. Rm C, Placerville followed by NAMI Family Support Group at 7:00. Let your voice be heard.

Psychosis  Toolkit

Psychosis Toolkit - Available Now!  How to transform emerging psychosis
In the course of our work at NAMI, we see all too much heartbreak when people with emerging psychosis don't get the services they need. It doesn't have to be this way!

Congress now requires states to set aside 10% of their block grant for the proven array of First Episode Psychosis (FEP) services. But mere allocation of federal dollars won't fulfill the vision in which EVERY young person in need can get these life changing services. 
We must all advocate effectively for high quality FEP service delivery.    Do you know what a good FEP service looks like?
Teachers/Coaches/Counselors/Mental-health-advocates/Parents/Caregivers -- we must all learn what a "quality" FEP program looks like.   In South Lake Tahoe it is important to know where to obtain high quality services and supports.   
FEP (First Episode Psychosis) is the wave of the future, changing the course of young lives.  
Psychosis Tip sheets:
1.     For youth and young adults: Early Psychosis: What's Going on and What Can You Do?
2.     For families and other stakeholders: What is Early and First-Episode Psychosis?
3.     For school staff and coaches:  Early Intervention: Tips for School Staff and Coaches
4.     For families: Encouraging People to Seek Help for Early Psychosis  

Local resources for First Episode Programs include  UC Davis Medical Center EDAPT Clinic in Sacramento. Click here   EDAPT Clinic for information on eligibility, referrals, and assessment information.
El Dorado County Mental Health also has a limited First Episode Psychosis program funded by a grant and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC (not just Medi-Cal individuals) running on both slopes.

BEYOND BEDS:  The Vital Role of a Full Continuum of Psychiatric Care

A Joint Report with the National Association of
State Mental Health Program Directors
Beyond Beds is a joint report with the 
 National Association of State Mental Health 
 Program Directors and represents the introductory 
 paper in a 10-part series on the inpatient psychiatric 
 treatment capacity in the United States.

A must read!  link to website here 



If you are one of the over 500 people who called, attended, or participated in a NAMI El Dorado County program this year, you are familiar with with how much it helps to know you are not alone.  Please consider providing a tax-deductable donation to help us continue this important work in our community.

Your Donations Are Needed and Greatly Appreciated!
Every dollar donated goes  directly to our education, support, and advocacy efforts.  
Our volunteers are our greatest asset and we are comprised of individuals and families with lived experience - working hard every day to crush stigma and improve services and supports in El Dorado County.  
Your donations; volunteer time, or in-kind donations are appreciated and used in our community to benefit and improve the lives of families and individuals living with mental illness.

Let us know if you would like to make a special donation  "in memory of" or  "in honor of" someone special or  "in support of our volunteerism in the community".   

Please add a note to your check (or email after using PayPal)   NAMI El Dorado County covers the Western Slope and South Lake Tahoe - we are one affiliate.
Donations by check:
Please make checks payable to: 

"NAMI El Dorado County", 
PO Box 393, 
El Dorado, CA 95623

Membership in NAMI has benefits!
Don't miss out on the excellent publications, NAMI Advocate Magazine (3 times per year) and the Voice newsletter, as well as online access to informative and thoughtful articles and blogs.   You will also have the option to receive advocacy alerts where you can advocate with your legislature with a single click.
Memberships can be made or renewed online: (select  NAMI El Dorado County Western Slope and South Lake Tahoe  when you apply for membership.)

Or, by mail to 
NAMI El Dorado County, P.O. Box 393, El Dorado, CA 95623.  

Household Membership $60 (new); Regular Membership $40; Open Door Membership $5

NOTE: If you live in bordering Nevada addresses such as Zephyr Cove or Stateline, NV or any areas outside of El Dorado County including any other states with loved ones or caregivers and you wish to join this affiliate - we welcome you.
When joining on-line system you will need to use a pull-down menu to select CA then find "NAMI El Dorado County."   

Interested in Volunteering?
Use your personal passion to give back.  
We are looking for individuals with an interest and skills in teaching, fundraising, organizational management, grant search and writing, and support group facilitation.  

Giving back  and helping others is not only a gift but an opportunity for  personal  growth and, let's face it, a chance to feel good. 

Call Jan: Western Slope at 530-306-7710

Call Jeanne: South Lake Tahoe at 650-740-5776.


NAMI El Dorado County
Board of Directors Meeting
First Tuesday every other month 
05-Dec-2017, 06-Feb-2018, 03-Apr-2018, 
05-Jun-2018, 7-Aug-2018, 02-Oct-2018.

County Government Center, Conf. Rm. C. 
This meeting is open to the public.  
5:30 p.m. - 6:45 p.m.: 

In Need of a Crisis Line?
If you or your child needs information, resources or someone to talk to during difficult times, make a call or send a text to:

 Language Matters: Tips from Dr. Amador
Do NOT Say: 
  • My loved one refuses to acknowledge he's mentally ill
  • Denies he's mentally ill
  • Won't admit
  • Doesn't admit....
  • Refuses to admit...(this is the worst offender)
  This all reflects our loved ones have a choice that they are ill.   We would never say "our loved ones won't admit they are hallucinating."
Do Say:
  • My loved one cannot comprehend he is mentally ill
  • Is unaware he is mentally ill
  • Unable to see or understand he's ...
  • Has anosognosia for his mental illness (which is an actual symptom in the DSM V)
Tips from Dr. Xavier Amador in his 10th anniversary edition book and his recent recorded webinar.   
You can find unlimited access to the recorded webinar available at 
Once you register the replay becomes available. The sound quality is poor but worth replaying. 

15-Nov-2017 from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. at Lake Tahoe Community College.  Pre-registration is required.   click here or send your name and email (if applicable) to 
Instructors: Jeanne & Alan 
7-Dec-2017 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at 345 Fair Lane.  
Instructors: Juline & Jan   click here to register

NAMI Family & Friends is a 4-hour seminar that informs and supports people who have loved ones with a mental health condition. Participants will learn about diagnoses, treatment, recovery, communication strategies, crisis preparation and NAMI resources. Seminar leaders have personal experience with mental health conditions in their families.


If you have recently, or in the past, taken one of our classes, please let others in the community know how valuable the experience was.  Your recommendations help to get the word out.  Too often we hear, "I wish I had known about this class years ago!". 

NAMI Basics - for caregivers/parents of children with behavioral challenges and/or a diagnosed mental health and/or substance use issue.

NAMI Family-to-Family -
for caregivers/parents of teens and adults of any age living with mental health and/or substance use issues.
is on the coveted list of SAMSHA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration) Evidence-based recovery models.  Visit to learn more about SAMSHA.   The classes are posted at and in this monthly newsletter when they are scheduled.  

We are happy to take your name and contact information if you wish to reserve space.   

"I learned more in NAMI Family-to-Family than in the past 20 years working as a nurse across a variety of hospitals."  
Anonymous graduate of NAMI El Dorado County's
"You tossed our family a life-rope and we held on.  Our loved one is now doing well.  This course saved our family and our marriage."  
Anonymous graduate of NAMI El Dorado County's F2F 
"I wish we knew about this course years ago...we cannot help but wonder how much better our loved one would be doing had we been introduced to NAMI sooner."   
Anonymous graduate of NAMI El Dorado County's NAMI F2F

Fun Fact
Over 350,000 individuals have graduated NAMI Family-to-Family educational program (this is less than 1/10th of 1% of the the US population.)   

Imagine how different the world would be if all of us were educated in mental health that emphasizes brain science?

NAMI Family-to-Family is on the coveted SAMHSA list of "evidence-based practices."

NAMI Educational programs in
South Lake Tahoe:

NAMI Family-to-Family education  in South Lake Tahoe: 
Class recently graduated; call to be added to waitlist for 2018:
Nursing CU's available.
Call Jeanne at 650-740-5776 to wait-list

NAMI  Peer-to-Peer: starts Spring 2018 in South Lake Tahoe: 24-Mar, 31-Mar, 7-Apr, 14-Apr, 21-Apr (5 consecutive Saturdays)
Accepting "interested" sign-ups now.  
Jeanne 650-740-5776 

NAMI El Dorado County classes on the Western Slope:

NAMI Family-to-Family Education Spring Class graduated in June.
Call Jan at(530) 677-2676  to leave your name on the list for our next class.  
NAMI Basics - This class is for families with children/adolescents with behavioral/mental health conditions.
If you are interested call Juline to have your name put on a wait list for the next class:   530 642-5659 
All NAMI programs are provided to the community at 
no cost to the participants and are offered once or twice a year.  Please call to put your name and contact information on our list for future classes.

We appreciate Law Enforcement - thank you for helping our loved ones! THANK YOU LAW ENFORCEMENT 

Law Enforcement - continues to help our communitycitofficerofyear

Safeguarding Officer mental health After Mass Casualty Events:  
Check out this NAMI guide for police chiefs..developed in collaboration with the Newton, CT police chief.   click here

NAMI Families and Friends in El Dorado County continue to  sing high praise for law enforcement's participation in CIT training and the leadership team's focus on ensuring officers are trained in Crisis Intervention Training.      


Did you know the volume of 5150's continue to trend down in this community?  This certainly may be attributed to increased CIT training across law enforcement.   

Thank you to all law enforcement in our community - for all you do for NAMI Families and the community:

Thank you for the on-going commitment and pride in the  "100% CIT-Trained" goal.

  • The Placerville Police Department is on Facebook  
  • El Dorado County Sheriff's department is on Facebook :  
  • South Lake Tahoe police is on Facebook.  

In Home Supportive Services

Some of our NAMI families in El Dorado County have reported favorably about the quality of the IHSS program.  They are paid by IHSS for basic services that helped their loved one live at home.  NAMI families particularly those that have graduated NAMI Family-to-Family are proactive in interviewing IHSS caregiver candidates to help their loved one and work collaboratively on a successful caregiving model.    Teamwork is dreamwork.   Learn more about this program at: 

Disability Benefit Information

Sustainability Outreach Services and Only Kindness Community Resource Center - Rene Evans - Accredited Disability Representative in Placerville - (530) 876-6243 or (530) 344-1864 is a comprehensive resource that helps people not only understand, but access social security disability benefits is available.   
In the course of their research:

Legal Services of Northern California - at no cost (for eligible persons)

is a non-profit law firm that provides free legal assistance to eligible persons.    If you need help with a health care issue, call (888) 354-4474.  If you need help with one of the other issues listed above, call (530) 823-7560.

Additional information about health care rights may be found at  

Behavioral Health Commission Meeting 26-Oct-2017: 
By NAMI El Dorado County Leader 

-- El Dorado County - 4 month's since Probation assigned a leader to lead the crucial Stepping Up  initiative.    
Frustrations continue to be high for a reason.  Family members are witnessing their loved ones going into jail managing their recovery well and coming out unwell - we need to overhaul things.  We need a funded Behavioral Health Court and provisions for mental health services/supports within our jails to protect/preserve cognition long-term.   
This is a huge opportunity for Probation to lead a county-wide transformation: Jail Leadership, H&HS, county prosecutors, judges, and a variety of mental health leaders must collaborate as a team with a passion for a successful implementation.   Step 1 is to organize and create a collaborative plan that welcomes input.

-- The Stepping Up Initiative (BACKGROUND)
continues to be a non-start in El Dorado County. 
Our Board of Supervisors signed a proclamation indicating they will implement this initiative 2 1/2 years ago. 

NAMI encourages everyone to learn more.  The National Association of Counties provides these  free webinars demonstrating each step in the recommended "Intercept Model."  We particularly appreciated  this webinar on conducting process analysis 
Check out the Intercept Model and a success story in the webinar provided by

2 months ago Commissioner Clavere worked to try and get any jail statistics from our county jail.   None were provided.   So, he went to the CA State Dept of Corrections and pulled the data that our jail sends to them!   They report a) who is on psych meds and b) how many are on their MH Case Load.  No surprise the numbers are precisely the same as they count whomever is taking a psych med is part of their "case load."  In Jan 2016 there were 130 and in Oct 2016 there were 156.  An average of 85/month in 2016 between WS and SLT.   Interesting there is "no data about MH Services" yet being provided by our jails.     

- El Dorado County - AOT Program continues to be a stalled program...a disasterous start. 

Yolo County is of similar size to El Dorado County.  Their AOT draws from their jail (ours does not but the commission members assumed that it would at the time the program was approved.)

 It took over a year to get AOT program approved and $500,000 was set provided to hire a part-time clinician to implement the program.   That said, the basic foundation to the program has not been laid.  That being, utilizing our jails as a feeder of AOT client candidates.  So there is a funded clinician without clients to service (and yet there are hundreds in our County in need but the criteria for servicing them is absurdly stringent and without merit.   
We appreciate that Sue Novasel, BOS, is in contact with the State of California to understand what it will take to get agreement that our jails can qualify as a "forensic jail."   County counsel is signaling they do not qualify as they do not have 7x24 in-patient mental health unit ... yet the CA state law does not state that a jail has to have an in-patient unit.  County leader is signaling that it does but has not yet provided evidence or a code or case law proving this. To further complicate things, EDC outsources their jail services to CFMG (who is in charge of Mental Health Services - so county leadership is claiming this makes it harder to create change.)   

Commissioner Jim Abrams indicated that their recent visit to the PHF was a real eye opener. The staff there did not know what AOT or Laura's Law means. So he provided PHF staff with introductory information about the importance of this program.
El Dorado County H&HS staff responded that the county staff does all the assessments and referrals so they are not exposed to those terms.  
The Commissioner commented that the process is not as transparent as it should be and the staff there should be aware of all processes.

Jamie S. gave a short presentation on the AOT program which to this point consists of all Voluntary Service Admissions - no court ordered participation!   We do seem to have a disconnect as to where the referrals are coming from.  This program is not being marketed to provide a broad net for referrals in spite of this being a recommendation/discussion point for months by this committee.  
An example is the PHF did not have the forms.  What we have is just the MHD screening and providing all referrals which is not how the program is supposed to work.  

The county provided no new updates on MHRC (Restitution of Care) or Stepping Up.

 HHSA Service Integration is examining where overlaps are.  Next update will be Jan.  No meeting in Dec.  Next meeting is Nov. 29th.  

AOT Program has been highlighted as an area of program management improvement opportunity. Inviting ideas as to how to improve this program and publically documenting open issues and measures of success is the collective goal.

El Dorado County Behavioral Health seeking public input for  
FY18/19 Mental Health Services Plan Update
The county will be providing public meetings, using social media, and promoting in news media to get the word out about how you can provide input to their plan. Your input is valuable.
NAMI El Dorado County is hosting a session on the WS and in SLT specifically to provide input to the county.
SLT: 2-Nov-2017 in the Aspen Room at LTCC 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
WS: 7-Nov-2017 County Government Center, 330 Fair Lane, Placerville, Conf. Rm. C, 6:00.   
- Do you have a passion to improve mental health and co-occuring addiction services and supports in our community?   The Mental Health Commission currently has vacancies.   Application form can be found  here
  •  South Lake Tahoe has 2 vacant positions - if you have a passion to volunteer and provide governance to our county's services/supports please apply.  You must live in El Dorado County to apply.

- Have you or a loved one had an experience with the Behavioral Health System in our county that was positive or problematical?  The Mental Health Commission is open to the public and the Commission welcomes the public's personal experience and stories during Public Comment.  It may be these accounts that are the impetus to needed changes.   

Patricia Charles-Heathers reports organization transformation on track and provided an updated organizational chart.  County's Healthy Community's plan is here  

El Dorado County is implementing a Quality Improvement Committee and is seeking family member participation and are especially interested in hearing feedback on their services.  Your opinion counts so let your voice be heard.  Details can be found here.

El Dorado County's H&HS BH Monthly Report can be found as an electronic link at the bottom of their Mental Health Commission agenda here.

NAMI El Dorado County outreach continues 

NAMI El Dorado County continues to provide mental health education and awareness at various county and school health fairs, back-to-school events/classes, and at clubs and other organizations.   

If your club, place of worship, or organization is interested in a 20, 60, or 120 minute mental health awareness overview please contact us. 

West Slope: Jan 530-677-2676 

South Lake Tahoe: 
Jeanne 650-740-5776

Spanish South-shore Tahoe Basin: Marisol  1-775-407-0306

Use AMAZON SMILE and select NAMI El Dorado County

Will you please share this with your friends and family?  You Shop, Amazon gives to NAMI El Dorado County.  1/2% of all your purchase amounts will then go to NAMI El Dorado County

NAMI El Dorado County is on FACEBOOK
Share our Facebook page with all your friends - we invite you to engage with us.   
Please "like" our page on Facebook - we invite you to add your comments  
You can find NAMI California information here:

Dear NAMI Families and Friends,

We approach November and Thanksgiving with feelings of gratitude and, for those affected by the terrible wildfires, also sadness and loss. It is important during these times to remind ourselves to appreciate our common needs of love, work, and hope.  

Some things I am particularly grateful for is spending time with my family and enjoying those relationships moment by moment.   Living and enjoying the moments is where living truly takes place.

It is with mixed feelings I am announcing I will be retiring from the NAMI El Dorado County Presidency by the end of the year.  It has been a privilege working with so many passionate and dedicated people from NAMI and so many other agencies, organizations, communities and families.  I will continue to support this wonderful organization, but need to take time to "tend my own garden".  It is my belief that my departure will pull in new energy and expertise to take NAMI El Dorado County into expanded and more effective directions. I am grateful that Jeanne Nelson, our South Lake Tahoe Board Member and Juline Aguilar on the West Slope will be assisting and guiding the organization during this transition.  We welcome and need community members interested in ensuring NAMI El Dorado County continues to be a dynamic and supportive presence for mental health to jump in and become a part of the organization.  Your support through active participation, donations, and memberships is essential and appreciated!

Good news to share with our readers:

We are grateful to see the county's plans for improving our county's
Adult System of Care.  This will involve integration of Mental Health with Adult Protective Services, Public Guardian, In-Home Supportive Services, and Senior Services.  The goal is to share knowledge and have no wrong door for access to services.

The Board of Supervisors recently agreed to move forward with the Jail Expansion Project.  This will allow HHSA to support the ReEntry Program for folks preparing to exit the jail into our community.  This is an exciting endeavor to assist in the prevention of potential clients from dropping through the cracks before getting connected to services.

We are anticipating the start of the CIT Mobile Crisis Unit, a new program for 911 calls for psychiatric emergencies with the goal to make a difference in the number of individuals who enter the Emergency Dept. unnecessarily and to provide early interventions to those having a crisis in the community.  We will give future updates on this valuable and needed program.

This newsletter issue is focused on co-occurring mental health and substance abuse.  We are pleased to share that EDC Behavior Health is embarking on another new pilot program targeted to individuals with co-occurring addictive disorders and mental illness.  This is the Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery System and will allow the county to expand drug treatment services to Medi-Cal enrollees. Please see more about this topic from Katy Echert, Assistant Director, HHSA below.  We have included several topical articles on this common problem that complicates diagnosis and treatment for our loved ones.

We are once again beginning the annual period of the MHSA (Mental Health Services Act) Community Planning Process.  This is a mandated requirement for counties to receive the funding from Prop. 13 which makes up the majority of county mental health funds.  Your participation is needed!
Here are our NAMI Community Meetings available for you to participate in:
South Lake Tahoe
02-Nov 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. MHSA Community Meeting in the Aspen Room at LTCC.
West Slope
07-Nov 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. MHSA Community Meeting, County Government Center, 330 Fair Lane, Conf. Rm C, Placerville followed by NAMI Family Support Group at 7:00
NAMI is hosting these public get-togethers so NAMI families and friends can share perspective with county MHSA leaders.  Let your voice be heard!  
NAMI on Campus starts 06-Nov at South Tahoe High School.  We are excited about this new program creating NAMI support for students at the high school level. Great work on the part of NAMI, school psychologists and counselors, teachers, students, and administration for their work getting this program started!   A special thank you to the Barton Foundation for funding the initial launch of this important club.   
We are also excited to announce this month NAMI EDC is offering a new pilot program, "Family and Friends", a 4-hour educational seminar offered on both slopes:
South Lake Tahoe -
15-Nov from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Location: LTCC in E-100.  Click here to register.   
West Slope - 09-Dec from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.: Location: 345 Fair Lane,  Placerville 
Don't forget our monthly Family Support Groups.  See side bar for times and places.  If you are struggling with the often confusing and difficult challenges of assisting a loved one living with a mental illness, please join us.  You are not alone.  
Our NAMI El Dorado County affiliate has been an all volunteer  team working together with lived experience for over 21 years!   We are driven by a passion that mental illnesses are neurobiological - a disorder of the brain.   We are grateful for the many skilled service providers in our community that help preserve self-esteem, improve behaviors, and help us achieve life goals. We are grateful for the brain research that is continuing and the medications that literally provide us the opportunity to thrive.   We are committed as a volunteer team to continue working hard to push for thoughtful leadership to our local community to make El Dorado County a healthy community to live, work and play.   Together we are better.   Together we can promote solutions to gaps in services/supports in our community.

We are fortunate too to have multiple resources in our county for Violence-Free Relationships.  In Placerville we have " The Center for Violence-Free Relationships," in South Lake Tahoe we have " Live Violence Free" and " A Balanced Life."  We appreciate Lindsay Simon's article below on the importance of raising the bar to zero tolerance for partnership violence and how this relates to mental illness.

We appreciate the kindness of Marisol , our NAMI Spanish Outreach volunteer leader.  Last week she provided a "Mental Health Awareness" support presentation to 15 parents at Family Resource Center. 
Note From our New President, Jeanne Nelson:   
It has been a great personal joy to collaborate with Jan Melnicoe in the nearly 3 short years we have known one another. Jan is a breath of fresh air, a bundle of tireless energy, and incredibly knowledgeable in the definition of quality services and supports for those living with mental illness.   She has helped hundreds of families and collaborated with county leadership to help guide  improvements in services and supports.   I'm honored she has been part of my life's journey and look forward to continuing our friendship and collaboration outside of the board room.     

On behalf of our entire board of directors, instructors, and other volunteers -
thank you Jan!         


Jan Melnicoe
Past President (retiring)


Jeanne Nelson
NAMI El Dorado County 


Navigating The Mental Health System With Dual Diagnosis
By Cindy and Don Gibbons |  Oct. 04, 2017 
It is with a heavy heart that we share our family experience and struggles while attempting to navigate a broken mental health system. Our son Alex suffered from a  dual diagnosisof  schizoaffective disorder and substance abuse. He was diagnosed seven years ago, although he had suffered much longer undiagnosed.

Read full blog here <-- family was 50th on waiting list of county system

Samantha Coleman at home with Apollo_ her newborn. Credit Brendan Bannon for The New York Times

One spring afternoon, Samantha Coleman's two daughters ran across the family's yard, chasing dozens of newly hatched chicks. Coleman, 28, ran after them. "Whoa! Child down," she called, reaching to pick up her 2-year-old, who had managed to fall into a bush.
"This is my life," Coleman said, laughing. "Gummy bears in my pockets, half-naked kids, spills everywhere." She paused. "But I'm good." Sometimes this still surprises her. Four years ago, things looked very different: Coleman was using heroin, was in a violent relationship and risked losing her older daughter to foster care.

Continue reading the main story

Jake at the University of North Carolina_ Chapel Hill. Credit Sasha Rudensky for The New York Times


Why are More American Teenagers than ever Suffering from Anxiety?

Parents, therapists and schools are struggling to figure out whether helping anxious teenagers means protecting them or pushing them to face their fears.

The disintegration of Jake's life took him by surprise. It happened early in his junior year of high school, while he was taking three Advanced Placement classes, running on his school's cross-country team and traveling to Model United Nations conferences. It was a lot to handle, but Jake - the likable, hard-working oldest sibling in a suburban North Carolina family - was the kind of teenager who handled things. Though he was not prone to boastfulness, the fact was he had never really failed at anything.
Not coincidentally, failure was one of Jake's biggest fears. He worried about it privately; maybe he couldn't keep up with his peers, maybe he wouldn't succeed in life. The relentless drive to avoid such a fate seemed to come from deep inside him. He considered it a strength.

Read full story here 


Largest twin study to date pins nearly 80 percent of schizophrenia risk on heritability

Photo credit: Intermountain Medical Center - DNA

8-Oct-2017 - Biological Psychiatry 

In the largest study of twins in schizophrenia research to date, researchers at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, estimate that as much as 79% of schizophrenia risk may be explained by genetic factors. The estimate indicates that genetics have a substantial influence on risk for the disorder.
Published in Biological Psychiatry, the study used a new statistical approach to address one of the factors that contributes to inconsistencies across previous studies - usually studies of heritability require that people be classified as either having schizophrenia or not, but some people at risk could still develop the disease after the study ends. Drs. Hilker, Helenius and colleagues applied a new method to take this problem into account, making the current estimates likely the most accurate to date.

LocalNewsLocal News and Discoveries

Special guests Deputy Kyle Jones (standing in blue shirt on the left) and 
Deputy Vic DeLeon (standing next to Karis on the right)

Hats off to the graduates of our Fall NAMI Family-to-Family class in South Lake Tahoe!  
Pictured above are some, not all, of our recent graduates - go team NAMI El Dorado County.   

If you would like to be part of this educational movement, sign up for a class.  We will schedule classes as demand indicates a need.  We are accepting names for future classes and you will be contacted when we have enough students signed up.  Family to Family on the Western Slope will be offered early Spring based on demand.  
batArticle by A Balanced Life Lindsay Simon...insert here
By  Lindsay Simon, LMFT
Clinical Director,  A Balanced Life

Domestic Violence: 
What is it?
It is important to educate yourself and our community on Domestic Violence (DV) so we can empower victims and society to create a culture of zero tolerance. 
Domestic Violence is present when there is an ongoing relationship between two people where one person is attempting to, or is, dominating the other partner. The biggest mistake people make about DV is thinking that it is just physical or sexual abuse.  Those are the obvious forms of DV, but usually occur much less frequently (if at all) in a DV relationship than the emotional, psychological, and financial abuse.   A DV relationship is about power and control rather than equality and negotiation.  Different forms of abuse are used to maintain power and control over the other partner.  In a DV relationship the emotion of fear is often felt and the feeling of "walking on eggshells". 

Violence is on a continuum, meaning there is mild, moderate, and severe levels of violence.  In a DV relationship typically the abusive behavior starts after there is emotional attachment.  Then what we might see is more mild forms of abuse (such as rolling your eyes at someone, put downs, name-calling) and over time the severity of the violence increases because the "bar needs to be raised" to get the same emotional reaction that say, calling someone stupid, once did.  So in order to get your point across maybe punching the wall is what is done, then maybe next time shoving, then the next incident hair pulling, then eventually the highest risk is death. 

Couples might be together for 1 month or 10 years before the first incident of violence occurs.  Once it does occur, if action is not taken to truly fix the problem then the cycle of violence will happen again, and next time faster and more severe.  To stop the cycle, this requires the dominant aggressor/perpetrator to genuinely and truly admit and understand what behavior they are guilty of, show remorse and empathy, and a plan of action created and followed through with to make sure this does not happen again. 

It is important to know if you are in a relationship where violence is present.   It doesn't matter if the violence is in the form of humiliation in public, or in punching the face, it is still all Domestic Violence and both will lead to more severe types of violence if nothing is done (in other words, if you forgive the person and let them back into your life just because they are sorry with no genuine accountability or plan of action in place, it is very likely to happen again and more severely). 

If you think you are in a DV relationship, here is a good website to look at as a starting place to evaluate your situation:

Educate yourself, seek help. 
It takes a lot of strength to seek help which is often necessary to reach a balanced life without fear and shame. You are worth it. 

How does this relate to mental health?
It is important to recognize that those living with a mental health diagnosis are more vulnerable to being victims of Domestic Violence.  Also, being the victim of violence is traumatizing and can trigger mental health problems, including, but not limited to, PTSD, depression, and anxiety.  It is often found that the perpetrators of Domestic Violence themselves live with a mental health diagnosis.  This is not to say mental health causes any of these problems, but among those who are in a DV relationship, much higher rates of mental health problems are found.  It is important to seek counseling from a professional mental health counselor if you are trying to heal and recover from a DV relationship or are trying to stop committing acts of DV yourself.  Make sure to ask your counselor if they have experience and training in working with DV.  In South Lake Tahoe Live Violence Free is a free resource for anyone who has ever been the victim of (including witnessing) any family violence in childhood or adulthood (in the past or currently).  A Balanced Life in South Lake Tahoe helps to rehabilitate perpetrators of DV through our Batterers' Intervention Program as well as heal victims who become survivors through individual counseling.

 Medication-Assisted Treatment works!


By Katie Eckart, Assistant Director,  

El Dorado County Health & Human Services Agency

We all have friends and neighbors, and in many cases, family members who struggle with mental health, and all too frequently, with co-occurring substance use addiction.  Recognizing the need for whole person care, El Dorado County HHSA is looking to find ways to develop a substance use disorder treatment continuum of care.  A key opportunity is the Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery System, which is a voluntary pilot program that allows California counties an opportunity to expand substance use treatment services for Medi-Cal enrollees.  Collaboratively with partner agencies, HHSA is actively pursuing this opportunity to establish a base foundation of services in El Dorado County.  Together, we are focused on bringing hope to individuals, friends, neighbors and loved ones who have had their lives affected by addiction.


Cannabis Health Risks - presented during public comment to City Council
4 MD's provide public comment in South Lake Tahoe | Aug 29, 2017 

Thank you to NAMI El Dorado County Member for high-lighting the start and end times of each of the Medical Doctor's public comments and sharing their key-points.  Thank you Barton Health for El Dorado County for providing leadership in educating our community on health risks.

  Read Here <-- Key Takeaways by these 4 doctors:
  • Dr. Lance Orr, Barton Health Emergency Services Director  
  • Dr. Rhonda Sneeringer, Barton Health Chief Medical 
  • Dr. Tracy Protell, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist: Board Certifications: American Board of Pediatrics, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Child and Adolescent, and American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Adult
  • Dr. Nancy Williams EDC Public Health Officer (read by Hector Reyes - supervising health education coordinator for EDC.
Special City Council Meeting full video replay available here 

NAMI On Campus is here - thank you student leaders!  

South Tahoe High School - Monday's 12:40 - 1:15 in A6

South Tahoe High School 12:40 - 1:15 p.m. in A6.   
FREE PIZZA to the first 30 students on Monday 06-Nov-2017

Students will learn about brain health, careers in brain science, and hear from guest speakers while leading their own resume-building NAMI On-Campus Club.   Questions? Contact Jeanne at 650-740-5776   

Flyer is posted here

NAMI On Campus leader Tina Miller from Lake Tahoe Community College
 initiated this new club in early October.  Students signed up during club night will continue to be invited to monthly awareness informal get togethers.  Thank you to the incredible leadership of Tina Miller and the full support of LTCC.    
Tina is making a difference!

Questions? Look for Tina Miller at the LTCC   NAMI On Campus club booth.

NAMI El Dorado County provided outreach presentations at Union Mine High School in Placerville on the Western Slope.
An English teacher covering a book on trauma with her 105 students invited NAMI to speak with her classes.  Long-time NAMI El Dorado County leader, Family-to-Family instructor and support facilitator, Jan Melnicoe chatted with the students about mental health symptoms and facts as a compliment to their selected reading.    
What a brilliant way to crush stigma.


militaryNAMI California Conference:  plan now to advance your education!
The 2018 NAMI California Annual State Conference will take place June 1-2 at the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa on Del Monte Golf Course in Monterey, California. Register today and take advantage of special pricing

We are encouraging our community to attend the 2018 NAMI California conference in Monterey, CA.    Psycho-education is core to building a healthy community to live, work and play.    

Take advantage of the super-early registration special.  Discount on rooms and conference registration.    

Hyatt Regency, Monterey, CA

StigmaFreeToolkitStigma-Free Toolkit - Available Now!  
Is your non-profit or place of employment "Stigma-Free?"


Mental health conditions can have a huge impact on companies, from decreased productivity to lowered morale. Companies that join with NAMI in being stigma-free can begin to reverse this. 

A Stigmafree Company is one that makes stigmafree culture a priority and shows that it values employees' overall health, including emotional well-being and physical health. Being stigmafree creates the foundation for a culture of openness, acceptance, understanding and compassion.  

Take the pledge; sign-up and get the free toolkit.

Important Information for Families

Community Mental Health Kiosks: 

5 West Slope "Mental Health Resource" Kiosks have been placed at the following locations: 

- Folsom Lake College   (El Dorado Center - Student Services - Green Valley Rd. )
- El Dorado County Library  (Cameron Park - Country Club Dr.)
- Marshall Emergency Department (1100 Marshall Way, Placerville)
- Georgetown Divide Wellness  (2 kiosks)  (6065 California 193, Georgetown)
- Shingle Springs Tribal Health  ( 5168 Honpie, Shingle Springs)

7 South Lake Tahoe "Mental Health Resource" Kiosk Locations:
Barton Emergency Room (2170 South Ave) 
Barton TeleMedicine Psychiatry (2209 South Ave, Suite A)
- Barton Behavioral Health (2209 South Avenue, Suite B)
Barton Community Health Center (2201 South Ave)
El Dorado County Probation/Sheriff (1360 Johnson Blvd)
Lake Tahoe Community College (next to college bookstore)
El Dorado County Library (1000 Rufus Allen Road)
Volunteers from NAMI El Dorado County (and the Barton Foundation) work to inventory and refill these valuable resources in our community.   

NOTE: NAMI Brochures are also available in the jail waiting room in South Lake Tahoe, in A6 at South Tahoe High School and in the waiting area at El Dorado County Behavioral Health.
We encourage family's and/or our loved ones to file a complaints / grievances.  This is how operations improve! Change is only possible with awareness.  Let your voices be heard.  

Have you done  all that you can do  to help improve the operation's of mental health services/supports?  Filing a simple complaint/grievance suggesting improvements helps improve our community's mental health services/supports as a whole!
Be part of the solution - make suggestions that are specific.

40% Fewer Re-Admission Rates when access to medical records provided
Learn more details  here.
artWeekly Art at Wellness in Placerville
Jan Melnicoe, NAMI El Dorado County retiring President, has facilitated as a skilled volunteer weekly art group at the Wellness Center in Placerville, CA.  She has provided this inspirational joy f or years.  Jan brings motivational style and interesting and unique art projects every week.  Plus she is 100% volunteer.  She has been serving our community for years teaching, inspiring, and sharing her passion for art and wellness.  
This spooky cat project celebrates the fun of pumpkins and black cats!.  Art projects include artistic techniques, art theory, and just fun art experiences.  Painting, drawing, and molding clay, are ways to connect with our inner creativity and bring calmness and pride into lives where this can be in short supply.

Think of trauma,  the THC in cannabis, and/or  high stress as potential "on-switches" to our genetic predisposition. According to Stanford Medicine heritability for depression is probably 40% and significantly higher for severe depression (2-3 times higher or 20-30% vs 10% chances of developing depression.)  

Addiction is estimated to be up to 60% genetic. Of those that are diagnosed with BiPolar or Schizophrenia it is estimated that there was a family history of mental health issues in 75-80% of those living with those mental health conditions.  
So understanding our relative's mental health and history of addictive behaviors can help us take steps to avoid triggers and build resilience.   Learn more here.

InjectablesAsk your doctor about Long-lasting Injectables

"Multiple families across our county have shared the very positive changes in their loved one since switching to a long-lasting injectable form of medication.  NAMI families reporting favorably about the positive change in their loved one since transitioning to long-lasting injectables such as most commonly reported Abilify Maintena (aripripazol) and Invega Sustenna (paliperidone).  There are others such as Risperdal Consta, Geodon  (ziprasidone
 mesylate). Clozaril (clozapine) has been referred to as the gold standard for treatment  resistant cases.   More technical information can be found here.
Every body is different so it is important to proactively discuss medication options with your treatment provider(s) and monitor side effects.   

Has your insurance company denied coverage?  Ensure you file an appeal advocating for your loved one and include a letter from your provider with the appeal.   
Contact the drug manufacturer to see if they have a program that will fund the drug on behalf of your loved one.  For example, Otsuka, the maker of Abilify has this program.
NAMI El Dorado County Instructor in SLT
Long-lasting injectable administration are available through 
  • Barton Psychiatry (through a medical technician on-site); 
  • El Dorado County Mental Health (monthly); and 
  • Safeway Specialty Pharmacy in South Lake Tahoe and on the Western Slope.
We continue to educate families and friends about the availability and benefits of long-lasting injectables for those that have this option available.    
Safeway provides a free case manager service (out of their Idaho call center) where they call and remind our loved ones when their injection is due, schedule the appointment, and help the process run smoothly.  Call 1-877 466-8028 and request speaking with an injectables case management team member.
You can buy the long-lasting injectable through other pharmacies and have it administered by a professional.
This is a great convenience since many family members were having to pick up the medication and bring it to a medical technician outside of the pharmacy setting to receiving the injection.  Now, it's one stop shopping.   

Are you Prepared for a Crisis?

NAMI El Dorado County is very grateful for our trained officers and deputies who recognize and respond to the human being behind the brain disorder in a way that lessens the possibility of violence and trauma.    

What to say when calling 9-1-1
for a Mental Health Emergency:  
read details here


BrainResearchBrain Research and Scientific Discoveries


Study Involves a Signaling Molecule Involved in Resilience to Stress
Using medication to augment signaling molecule 2-AG in the brain may promote resilience to adverse effects of traumatic stress and help individuals better adapt to repeated stress, a preliminary study in mice suggests.'s  research 

Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (dTMS) Could Help Treat Bipolar Depression 

Brain Activity Patterns Could Help Identify Best Treatment for Patients with Major Depression: BBRFoundation research

Teens and Young Adults Urged to Wait before you Vape: <- full article here
That's because THC occupies the same receptors on neurons as a natural brain chemical called anandamide. In essence, THC is acting as an impostor of this  natural chemical.
The brain's electrical pathways and the insulation process aren't complete until the mid-20s for females and late 20's for males.  This means teen/young-adult brains are vulnerable to outside influences. In addition, teen brains are more "plastic." They adapt and learn faster than adult brains - suggesting that teens/young-adults  are more vulnerable to developing an addiction.    
ECT is generally used when severe depression is unresponsive to other forms of therapy. Or it might be used when patients pose a severe threat to themselves or others and it is too dangerous to wait until medications take effect.
Although ECT has been used since the 1940s and 1950s, it remains misunderstood by the general public. Many of the procedure's risks and side effects are related to the misuse of equipment, incorrect administration, or improperly trained staff. It is also a misconception that ECT is used as a "quick fix" in place of long-term therapy or hospitalization. Nor is it correct to believe that the patient is painfully "shocked" out of the depression. Unfavorable news reports and media coverage have contributed to the controversy surrounding this treatment.
Study looks at how Legalization of Marijuana affects Teen Usage:
Visit and attend their monthly "Meet the Scientists" webinars at no cost <- they fund scientific research to ultimately find a cure for mental illness - improved treatment discoveries are lending towards full, happy, productive lives.
latinoLatino Community Members
"Stop Stigma with Science"   
Detener el estigma con la ciencia

20% -  de los latinos nacidos en Estados Unidos han sufrido de un reto de salud mental durante el último año.

Check out these Spanish resources:           
La salud mental en la comunidad latina


NAMI El Dorado County: Spanish Warm-line in SLT: 775-407-0306

ENGLISH: Getting any kind of health treatment is sometimes difficult to manage for families, and the barriers of language, community isolation, stigma, provider availability and cultural differences, compounds this difficulty.  We believe adjunct treatments to be of great benefit for those who find them reassuring, comforting, and familiar. NAMI stands firmly on the side of science and evidence based treatments as the desired primary treatment modality.  We do not support "alternative" treatments in lieu of, considering the damaging effects of continued psychosis or prolonged damaging mental health episodes. We are working hard to provide evidence-based education in our community.   You are not alone.

SPANISH: Es importante señalar que, en el caso del estigma, hay una falta de conocimiento sobre la calidad de la atención de la salud. Creemos que son útiles para aquellos que los encuentran tranquilizadores, reconfortantes y familiares. NAMI está firmemente en el lado de la ciencia y la evidencia basada en tratamientos como la modalidad de tratamiento primario deseado. No apoyamos tratamientos "alternativos" en lugar de, considerando los efectos perjudiciales de psicosis continuada o episodios de salud mental dañinos extendidos.  Estamos trabajando duro para proporcionar educación basada en la evidencia en nuestra comunidad. No estas solo

Local Mental Health Events
The El Dorado Mental Health Commission is part of a system of Boards and Commissions established under the Welfare and Institutions Code.  Its purpose is to review and report tp the Board of Supervisors about the County's Mental Health Plans. It is comprised of volunteers from the Community with lived or professional experience in mental health.
The Mental Health Commission is open to the public.  
It meets the 4th Wednesday of each month.  
3 min is allowed for public comment (and the public is invited to provide perspective when prompted by the chair after each agenda item.)   Let your voice be heard to help improve county services/supports.

MHCEl Dorado County Mental Health Commission: 
Next Meeting is 29-Nov-201 7 at 5:00 p.m. 
2 locations - both connected via video-link
  • Health and Human Services Agency, 3057 Briw Rd., Sierra Room, Placerville, CA 
  • South Lake Tahoe at the Wellness Center 1900 Lake Tahoe Blvd  
These meetings are  open to the public and are an important interface between the community and our county mental health system.  Concerns and stories from the community are welcome during public comment time at the start of each meeting.  

While your concerns may not be discussed unless it is already an item on the agenda, your input as part of the public is valued and will  be addressed at a later meeting.

Are you interested in becoming a member of the Mental Health Commission?  
Let your voice be  heard in El Dorado County: vacancies on both slopes
MHC Agenda and Minutes can be found:  here    

Mark your calendars:  NAMI Convention Jun 27-30, 2018: Sheraton, New Orleans: 
Dr Ken Duckworth, NAMI Medical Director announced that "The British are Coming to New Orleans!"  The founders of CBT for Schizophrenia, Turkington & Kingdon (Cognitive Therapy of Schizophrenia (Guides to Individualized Evidence-Based Treatment) will be providing a 1/2 day or full-day session at the New Orlean's NAMI Convention. Details to follow.

We encourage our county's CIT leaders, El Dorado County H&HS leaders, Jail leadership, mental health providers and NAMI community members to attend. 
Many county leaders across our nation attended the 2017 conference.   
Learn from many top neuroscientists, modern best practices, and the latest discoveries relevant to peers, families, jail leadership, therapists, law enforcement, etc.

Reflections of Life and Loss (South Lake Tahoe)  graphic-heart.gif
Second and Fourth Thursdays monthly 12 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Barton Hospice encourages people who have experienced the loss of a loved one or have endured a significant, life-altering event to attend.   This group helps teach attendees how to cope with certain situations and encourages emotional connections with others. Support and bereavement groups allow people to release emotions they may otherwise keep to themselves. It can improve a participant's mood and decrease psychological distress.
Location: Barton Hospice
2092 Lake Tahoe Blvd, Suite 600
South Lake Tahoe, CA

Friends for Survival - on the Western Slope
Marshall Medical Center
Friends For Survival is a national non-profit organization offering help after a suicide death:
Meetings are held monthly. For more information, contact Walt or Leona Narr at 530-647-8864.    

Survivors of Suicide (SOS) in South Lake Tahoe
Loss Support Group 
Meeting is held the 4th Thursday of every month
2092 South Lake Tahoe Blvd.
Contact or 775-783-1510

Bipolar Insights (Placerville)
Weekly Class * Every Monday at 7 pm
Green Valley Community Church
3500 Missouri Flat Road, Room 304 in Placerville, CA 95667
$5 per person per class

Special Events * Tuesday's
Marshall Medical Building
681 Main Street, 1st Floor Common Room in Placerville, CA 95667
Check the website for dates and events
Bipolar Insights / Mental Health Education Center  (530) 642-0859      

Where to Find Help? This is the county's website for health & wellness (calendar, statistics and more.)

Community Health Directory  is available in South Lake Tahoe at any Barton provider and at each of the  7 Mental Health Kiosks   t hrough-out the community or at NAMI Support Group.    Here is the  link  to the on-line Community Directory.
Notice all the support groups and counseling services - there are many health and wellness programs available.   

Barton Health has identified the need for additional mental health services and continues to take action to provide extra support for patients and the South Lake Tahoe community. 

Barton provides 3 local psychiatrists:
Dr. Zelan, Dr. Protell, and Dr. Rupp plus Telemedicine and Psychologists and also licensed Social Workers - each focused on improving mental health.  
NAMI Families reporting such favorable results!
Check out  Barton's mental health page  which outlines strategic priorities and accomplishments and more. 

Have you been wait-listed to see a Psychiatrist?   Make an immediate appointment with your Primary Care Physician.  

We need to close the gap on long wait-lists.  Do not delay treatment - hunt for an available provider and ask for available alternatives.

Did you know there are MORE than 2 dozen therapists available in South Lake Tahoe? Ask your NAMI leader in South Lake Tahoe if you are unable to locate the directory.
Please refer to the "Community Resource Guide" for a comprehensive list of providers. These are available at each of the Mental Health Kiosks in South Lake Tahoe.   
Ask your NAMI community leader if you cannot locate the directory.  

El Dorado County Behavioral Health - Wellness Centers  
(Diamond Springs  and South Lake Tahoe)

Adult Outpatient Services Wellness Centers, 768 Pleasant Valley Rd., Diamond Springs and 1360 Johnson Blvd., South Lake Tahoe,   continue to provide a safe, understanding,  and recovery oriented place, Monday through Friday afternoons 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. 

NOTE: Wellness Centers are migrating towards a Peer-Led support group model; some are co-lead by licensed therapists and many are lead by Peers.    

obtained a grant to fund FEP (First Episode Psychosis Program) 
AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC  -  not just Medi-Cal insured individuals  
Individuals with other types of insurance welcome as this program is funded by a grant.  
 Call   530-573-7970 El Dorado County Behavioral Health to learn more.

El Dorado County Behavioral Health - free support groups 
OPEN TO THE PUBLIC - not just county clients
Drop in hours are from 1:00 to 4:00 Monday through Friday:  adults 18+
for people to socialize and participate in a wide assortment of fun and therapeutic groups. 

Group schedules are available at the Wellness Centers and may include: Dialectal Behavior Therapy, Anger Management, Conversation Skills, Healthy Pleasures, Smoking Cessation, Symptoms without Stigma, Mindfulness, Coping Skills, Stress/Anxiety Reduction, Seeking Safety, and others.  Some of these groups are available on a referral basis only, while other groups, such as Art, Physical Activity, Mindfulness, Coping Strategies, etc. are open to all.  Check current schedule at the Centers.

Psycho-education is a core to recovery: 

Recommended Reading
Pick up a copy of our recommended reading booklist and interesting website list at our NAMI Family Support Group meeting or simply click visit
Visit El Dorado County library or your local community college library where you will find many fantastic books featuring mental health and/or substance abuse topics.

Visit the Marshall Community Health Library, 3581 Palmer Dr., Cameron Park.  Good selection of titles on mental health, including NAMI picks!  

Visit and scroll to the bottom of the page where you can learn more about specific illnesses.
Visit  and visit their on-line
Virtual forums - FREE on-line webinars


Providers and community members are welcome to participate in virtual webcasts (and replay them whenever convenient.) Simply create a free login to participate and view past research and previously recorded forums. 

  BBRF Webinar - Research Updates: Improving Functioning in Schizophrenia 
Tuesday, November 14, 2017 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PDT

 BBRF Webinar-   Robert Lowell: Courage, Genius and BiPolar Disorder
Tuesday, December 14, 2017 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM PDT
Early Intervention In Schizophrenia: Targeting Metabolic Dysfunction
Virtual Forum | November 7, 2017 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm ET




  (530) 306-7710 - Western Slope (650) 740-5776 - South Lake Tahoe
PO Box 393, El Dorado, CA 95623