April 27, 2023

Governor Hochul Announces Award of More Than $5.8 Million for New Addiction Treatment Programs in New York State

Governor Kathy Hochul on Monday announced the awarding of over $5.8 million to providers across New York State to establish comprehensive integrated outpatient treatment programs for addiction. This funding is being distributed through the State's Opioid Settlement Fund. Comprehensive integrated outpatient treatment programs provide more opportunities to access person-centered comprehensive services, including medication treatment for opioid use disorder. Programs receiving this funding will operate both an outpatient treatment program and an opioid treatment program (OTP) at the same site. Read more here.

New Study: Behavioral Health Workforce Shortage Will Negatively Impact Society

New survey data from the National Council for Mental Wellbeing, conducted by The Harris Poll, finds that the vast majority (83%) of the nation’s behavioral health workforce believes that without public policy changes, provider organizations won’t be able to meet the demand for mental health or substance use treatment and care. The survey (attached), conducted among 750 behavioral health workers and more than 2,000 U.S. adults, also warns of a potential exodus of behavioral health workers due to burnout. Read more here.

Related: Building a Better World: How MSW Graduates Can Make a Difference in New York

Substance Abuse Treatment Could be Strengthened in New York Prisons

Treatment, support and transition programs for substance abuse disorder could be designated as essential medical services in New York's prisons under a measure approved unanimously Wednesday in the state Senate. The measure is meant to address what lawmakers said are gaps in treatment programs currently available in correctional facilities. Treatment programs like medication-assisted treatment using methadone and buprenorphine can aid in treating substance abuse disorder, but when a person enters prison, they can experience painful withdrawal symptoms. Read more here.

The NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports and the NYS Department of Health Launch Buprenorphine Assistance Program (Bupe-AP)

The New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) and the New York State Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday announced the launch of the Buprenorphine Assistance Pilot Program to assist New Yorkers with the cost of buprenorphine for the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD). Bupe-AP will cover the cost of buprenorphine for eligible uninsured and under-insured individuals with no out of pocket costs for their medication. Buprenorphine is used to help manage OUD involving substances such as heroin, fentanyl, and prescription opioids, and decreases the risk for opioid-related mortality (overdose). Read more here.

Related: Buprenorphine Initiation Rates Stall Despite Policy Efforts to Boost Uptake

NYS OASAS Releases New Video Showcasing Opioid Treatment Providers and Success Stories of Individuals in Treatment

Study: Rural Healthcare Access Lacking for Minority Populations

For residents in rural communities, getting to healthcare is a challenge. Researchers in a new study have found it’s even more of a challenge for minority populations. The report, from the Rural and Minority Health Research Center, looked at how close some ZIP codes were to different kinds of health care. Then they looked at what access looked like in areas with higher proportions of racial and ethnic minorities. What the study found, said Janice Probst, lead author, was that the availability of different kinds of healthcare was worse for rural minorities. Read more here.

Pain, Hope, and Science Collide as Athletes Turn to Magic Mushrooms

WAKEFIELD, Jamaica — The boxer felt broken. Every day, he was waking up in pain. Some days, it was debilitating headaches. Other times, it was his back. Or his fists. His ribs. His nose. On top of that, he had mood swings. Depression. Anxiety. Mike Lee didn’t regret his career. He had been one of the best professional fighters in the world in his weight class. He’d gone 21-1 professionally and fought in Madison Square Garden and in front of millions on TV. But it had been more than two years since he’d been inside a ring, and every day was a reminder of the cost. At one point, Lee was taking eight prescription medications, all of them trying to help him cope. In his lowest moment, on a night when he was in the depths of an addiction to painkillers, he said, he contemplated driving his car into the median of a Chicago freeway at 140 mph. He was willing to do anything to escape the hell he felt trapped in. Read more here.

Payers Must Create Infrastructure to Support Behavioral Health Providers Moving Towards Value-Based Care Contracting

While the medical community agrees that integrating behavioral health and primary care is critical to better patient outcomes, making that happen means disrupting the status quo. Industry stakeholders are rethinking the current reimbursement structure to promote integrated care. But to shift the current paradigm, payers and providers must work together to navigate uncharted territory. Roughly 15% of primary care visits in the U.S. address a behavioral health concern, according to recent data from Health Affairs. Yet, full integration of services is rare, making it difficult for primary care providers to help patients find appropriate behavioral health services. Read more here.

Related: Strategies Used by States to Link Medicaid Managed Care Plan Payment to Performance in Behavioral Health Service Delivery

The IMD Exclusion—One More Time

Eliminating the Medicaid institutions for mental disease (IMD) exclusion for both mental health and addiction treatment would cost the Federal government about $4 billion per year, or so. This is one of the many findings of a new Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis, Budgetary Effects Of Policies To Modify Or Eliminate Medicaid’s Institutions For Mental Diseases Exclusion. The “IMD exclusion” has been around since the Medicaid program started in 1965. The rule prohibits states from using Medicaid to pay for care provided IMD—defined as psychiatric hospitals/residential treatment facilities with 16 or more beds. The Medicaid rule was designed to disincentivize the treatment of the mentally ill in large institutions and shift the costs for psychiatric treatment from the federal government onto the states. Currently, states have four options to pay for behavioral health services in these specialty treatment settings. Read more here.

Related: The federal government can — and should — help the mentally ill

The Truth About Teens, Social Media and the Mental Health Crisis

Back in 2017, psychologist Jean Twenge set off a firestorm in the field of psychology. Twenge studies generational trends at San Diego State University. When she looked at mental health metrics for teenagers around 2012, what she saw shocked her. "In all my analyses of generational data — some reaching back to the 1930s — I had never seen anything like it," Twenge wrote in the Atlantic in 2017. Twenge warned of a mental health crisis on the horizon. Rates of depression, anxiety and loneliness were rising. And she had a hypothesis for the cause: smartphones and all the social media that comes along with them. "Smartphones were used by the majority of Americans around 2012, and that's the same time loneliness increases. That's very suspicious," Twenge told NPR in 2017. Read more here.

Related: A Devastating Report on Teen Mental Health: Many Causes Require Many Responses

ALLEGANY: Alfred University awarded $4.64 million to fund Mental Health Demonstration Project

CHAUTAUQUA: County Discusses Overdoses, Opioid Settlement Funds

COLUMBIA: Rep. Molinaro Requests Federal Funding for Wellness Hub in Columbia County

COLUMBIA: People USA is Adding a Critical Tool to the Mental Health Toolkit

COLUMBIA: Columbia County issues overdose spike alert

CORTLAND: Cortland County to prioritize mental health for students

CORTLAND: Radio Interview with Sharon MacDougall, Cortland County Mental Health Department

ERIE: Another Voice: There's a Mental Health Crisis in Our Correctional Facilities

JEFFERSON: Ribbon cut at Watertown’s new mental health urgent care

JEFFERSON: Jefferson County lawmakers will hire a head for homelessness

LONG ISLAND: CVS Health ACO Partnership Expands Value-Based Care in Long Island

MONROE: WNY/Rochester Regional Health Chemical Dependency Services among first in NYS to receive LGBTQ-Affirming Care Program endorsement

NYC: Governor Hochul Announces More Than $20 Million for Supportive Housing Projects

NYC: Report calls for crisis hotline to replace 911 for mental health emergencies in NYC

NYC: Columbia University Launches Center for Precision Psychiatry & Mental Health with $75 Million Grant from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF)

ONEIDA: Xylazine, or 'tranq,' overdose deaths emerge in Oneida County, mobilizing response teams

STEUBEN: Steuben addiction facility receives state grant

SUFFOLK: City Health Department Gives $9M to Long Island Nonprofit To Create Supportive Housing

TOMPKINS: County Redirecting Second Wind Community Recovery Funding

ULSTER: Ulster County Youth Bureau announces first annual youth summit

WESTERN NY: WNY Medical Scholarships help keep the doctors UB trains close to home

WESTERN NY: St. Joseph's Hospital to open substance abuse treatment center next month

Incorporating Community-Based Organizations in Medicaid Efforts to Address Health-Related Social Needs: Key State Considerations

State Medicaid programs are increasingly connecting the dots between the medical, behavioral, and social components of health to achieve the goal of more equitable, whole-person care that addresses the health-related social needs (HRSN) of Medicaid enrollees. Medicaid agencies increasingly require health care organizations (HCOs) to partner with CBOs. New guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on HRSN services will likely expand the impact of these relationships. This Center for Health Care Strategies report explores insights from early state innovators to help guide states, HCOs, and CBOs in shaping and navigating successful CBO-HCO relationships. The report draws from an examination of leading-edge state Medicaid programs requiring formal CBO-HCO partnerships, as well as stakeholder and expert interviews, to identify best practices and implementation considerations for other states interested in strengthening CBO-HCO partnerships.

Families, Activists Call for Increased Access to Care for Young Adults with Autism

The national organization Autism Speaks has been working for many years to correct the false assumption that autism is a childhood condition that can be outgrown. People with autism and their support networks will tell you that as they grow, so do the supports they need. For Jelani Jones-Moore, a 21-year-old with autism, finding his purpose is challenging. Navigating the transition from school-age to young adult has been difficult for Jones-Moore. He was an early intervention student. In grade school, there were built-in services and supports. Today, he and his family are struggling to find resources. Read more here.

A Radical Experiment in Mental Health Care, Tested Over Centuries

Patients who visit their primary care doctor for opioid addiction treatment reduce their overdose risk, a new study suggests

College campuses are facing a mental health crisis. Students are leading the way out of it

Mental Block: The Brain Often Stops Us From Learning From Mistakes

CDC Data Brief: Suicide Mortality in the United States, 2001–2021


Behavioral Health Parity 101

April 27, 12 - 1:30 pm, NYCDHMH

CORE Virtual Regional Learning Session - Western

April 27, 12 - 1:30 pm, OMH/NYTAC

Mental Health Workforce - Shortages, Disparities, & LGBTQ+ Care

April 27, 1 - 2 pm, NIHCM

Determining Level of Care within Crisis Services

April 27, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Harm Reduction Office Hours with Providers

April 27, 2 - 3:30 pm, OASAS

Peer Recovery Support Series, Part 3: Inclusive Outreach for Beginners - How to Create More Diverse Spaces in the Recovery Community

April 27, 3 - 4:30 pm, NAADAC

Access to Care for Justice-Involved Pregnant People With a Substance Use Disorder

May 1, 2 - 3 pm, Manatt

Investigation Basics for State Oversight and Provider Agency Staff Day 1

May 2, 9:30 am - 12 pm, The Justice Center

Strategies for Providing Whole Child Care: A Blueprint for Meeting Children’s Social Needs

May 2, 3:30 - 4:30 pm, Manatt

Investigation Basics for State Oversight and Provider Agency Staff Day 2

May 3, 9:30 am - 12 pm, The Justice Center

PSYCKES for BHCCs and Other Networks

May 3, 1 - 2 pm, OMH

Intergenerational Family Mental Health: MHANYS Innovative Programming

May 4, 12 - 1 pm, MHANYS

OASAS SAPT Supplemental Grant Information Session

May 4, 1 - 2 pm, OASAS

Labor of Love: Experiences of Harm Reduction Workers Using PhotoVoice

May 6, 4 - 6 pm, Peer Network of New York

WHAT'S GREAT IN OUR STATE 2023: A Celebration of Children's Mental Health

May 9, 9 am - 12:30 pm, OMH

PSYCKES for Health Homes and Care Management Agencies

May 9, 10 - 11:30 am, OMH

Sexual Misconduct: Boundaries and Ethics in Addiction Counseling – “Where’s the Line”

May 10 - 11, 9 am - 4 pm, OASAS

The State of Our Children’s Health

May 10, 1 - 2 pm, NICHM

Diagnosis and Treatment of Gaming Use Disorder

May 10, 3 - 4:30 pm, NAADAC

Equitably Identifying Individuals for Care Management: Strategies for CalAIM and Beyond

May 15, 2 - 3 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

Rural Telehealth & M-Health for Children & Youth

May 16, 2 - 3 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Enhancing Harm Reduction Services in Health Departments: Fentanyl Test Strips and Other Drug Checking Equipment

May 16, 3 - 4 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Impact of the End of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency on Opioid Use Disorder Treatment

May 16, 3 - 4:30 pm, FORE

Engaging Families in SUD Services: A Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP 39) Training

May 17 - 18, 9 am - 4 pm, OASAS

Supporting Individuals Living With A Mental Health Condition Through 988 & Mental Health Education

May 18, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

2023 Let's Talk About Health: Caring for Seniors in Rural New York - Virtual Conference

May 19, 8:30 am - 3:45 pm, University of Rochester Medical Center

Faces Of Depression In Primary Care: Depression Symptomology & Functional Outcomes From Early To Late Adulthood

May 24, 12 - 1 pm, PsychU

A Fire Within: Working With the Rage of Trauma and Oppression

May 24, 3 - 5 pm, NAADAC

Peer Recovery Support Series, Part 4: Peer Supervision - Leadership and Lived Experience

May 25, 3 - 4:30 pm, NAADAC



Quarterly LGU Billing Staff Call

May 2: 11 am - 12 pm

Executive Committee Meeting

May 3: 8 - 9 am

Developmental Disabilities Committee Meeting

May 4: 1 - 2 pm

LGU Clinic Operators Call

May 9: 10 - 11:30 am

CLMHD Spring Full Membership Meeting

May 10 - 12, Embassy Suites, Saratoga Springs

Children & Families Committee Meeting

May 16: 11:30 am - 1 pm

Deputy DCS Call

May 23: 10 - 11 am

CLMHD Office Closed - Memorial Day

May 30

CLICK HERE for Links to State Guidance and Updates on COVID-19

NYS Coronavirus Vaccination Information

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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