December 29, 2022

Parents Often Bring Children to Psychiatric E.R.s to Subdue Them, Study Finds

For emergency room doctors, they are a dispiriting and familiar sight: Children who return again and again in the grip of mental health crises, brought in by caregivers who are frightened or overwhelmed.

Much has been written about the surge in pediatric mental health emergency visits in recent years, as rates of depression and suicidal behavior among teens surged. Patients often spend days or weeks in exam rooms waiting for a rare psychiatric bed to open up, sharply reducing hospital capacity.

But a large study published on Tuesday found a surprising trend among adolescents who repeatedly visited the hospital. The patients most likely to reappear in emergency rooms were not patients who harmed themselves, but rather those whose agitation and aggressive behavior proved too much for their caregivers to manage. Read more here.

Related: Emergency Department Length of Stay for Children with Mental Health Conditions Spikes

New partnership for emergency pediatric telepsychiatry care in Vermont

Governor Hochul Signs Legislative Package to Help New Yorkers Prevent and Treat Substance Use Disorder

Governor Hochul last week signed a legislative package that will help New Yorkers prevent and treat substance use disorder.

"My Administration is committed to working every day to fight substance use disorder and providing New Yorkers with further access to lifesaving resources, services, and care," Governor Hochul said. "I am proud to sign this legislative package into law which will support countless New Yorkers struggling with addiction and save lives." Read more here.

Related: FDA grants fast-track review for over-the-counter overdose drug

What's Best for Treating Patients Who Are on Xylazine or 'Tranq'?

Governor Hochul Releases Prison Redevelopment Commission Recommendations

Governor Kathy Hochul last week released the recommendations of the New York Prison Redevelopment Commission, a 15-member panel convened by the Governor earlier this year to reimagine closed prisons across New York State for innovative redevelopment. The recommendations were unveiled in Unlocking Opportunity: The Report of the Prison Redevelopment Commission, a 140-page report that includes detailed site analyses of 12 closed prisons and considers redevelopment opportunities for each site to help them better serve the State's economic needs. Read more here.

New York State Department of Health Announces Appointment of Acting Commissioner

The New York State Department of Health last week announced that Dr. James McDonald will lead the Department as Acting Commissioner starting January 1, 2023, until a permanent commissioner is appointed, following a national search. Dr. McDonald currently serves as the Medical Director of DOH's Office of Public Health and Interim Director of the Center for Community Health, which is part of the Office of Public Health. Dr. McDonald came to DOH in July after working for 10 years at the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH), most recently as Interim Director (Commissioner) of RIDOH. Read more here.

National Telehealth Program Announced for Those with an Elevated Suicide Risk

A new national telehealth program called Crisis Care has been created to treat individuals with elevated suicide risk, a release from Brightside Health stated. According to the release, the program was developed to fill a widening gap in telehealth services that concentrate on those with low-to-moderate health conditions, which provides timely access to specialized care for individuals with acute suicide risk. Read more here.

Related: Leveraging Telehealth Platforms to Enhance Provider Workflows, Adoption

Teen Suicides Fell During Lockdown, Rose When In-Person Schooling Resumed, Study Finds

Under New Rules, Methadone Clinics Can Offer More Take-Home Doses. Will they?

Danielle Russell is, as she says, a “poster child” for methadone. For more than a decade, the medication — one of the most effective treatments for opioid addiction — has helped her move past the heroin she used to use. She finished a series of degrees, and is now a Ph.D. student in justice studies at Arizona State University. As life-changing as methadone is, the catch is that taking the tightly regulated medication requires reporting to a special clinic nearly every day to get one’s dose. When the Covid-19 pandemic arrived, that changed. In an effort to reduce contact among people at clinics, federal health officials said that providers could give up to 14 days of take-home doses to patients broadly, and up to 28 days to “stable” patients — patients, Russell thought, like her. Read more here.

How Community-Based Organizations Are Taking a Tech-Driven Approach to Connect Health Services to Social Care

At a time when New York City has declared a state of emergency amid an influx of thousands of migrants, social safety nets have been strained. Inflation has led to a spike in demand for social services. Yet Mayor Eric Adams recently announced that the city may cut back on public services to focus on migrant assistance. 

The city’s largest public health nonprofit, Public Health Solutions (PHS), must operate despite these challenges with a network of hundreds of community-based partners that collectively serve more than 1,100 New Yorkers a month. To do so, a high level of connectivity is required to understand eligibility and process referrals. 

One health tech company has been facilitating those connections. True to its name, Unite Us offers a platform that connects health services to social care. The software aims to address social determinants of health and is free to community-based organizations like PHS. Read more here.

Related: How a Primary Care EHR Integration Enhanced SDOH Documentation

Testing One, Two, Three: CMS’ New Demonstration Opportunity to Address Health-Related Social Needs

BROOME: $35 million housing project planned for Binghamton

CENTRAL NY: Rep. Katko Delivers Over $20 Million In Federal Funding for Transformational Projects Across Central New York

CHAUTAUQUA: County to pay $380,000 for mental evaluations

CORTLAND: Springbrook To Develop Residential Units

for Persons with Disabilities in Cortland

ERIE: Hopewell Center scraps plans for facility at Cleve-Hill Medical Park, will search for a new location

ERIE: ECMC nurses on CPEP: 'It just seems like the whole system is starting to break down'

GENESEE: Ready to help: PAARI available for people seeking help from addictions

MONROE: After ‘Raise the Age’ law, Monroe County calls for changes at Children’s Detention Center

NYC: Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg earmarks $9 million for mental health outreach

NYC: Renderings Reveal $1.2B Mixed-Use Alafia Campus In East New York, Brooklyn

ONEIDA: Oneida County Suicide Prevention Program receives $12,500 grant

PUTNAM: Putnam County Announces Drug Crisis Center

SUFFOLK: Suffolk Sheriff Opens Port Jefferson Center To Help Former Inmates

TOMPKINS: $6 million in Recovery Fund awards approved, led by $1.5 million stabilization center

YATES: Yates County To Adopt Required Domestic Terrorism Prevention Plan This Week

SAMHSA Releases Draft Updates to CCBHC Criteria 

SAMHSA released its draft updates to the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC)  Certification Criteria on 12/21/22. These updates will apply to current CCBHCs as well as those intending to pursue CCBHC status in the future.


SAMHSA is accepting public comments on the draft criteria updates through January 20, 2023. Interested individuals are encouraged to submit comments to SAMHSA by emailing

In addition, SAMHSA is holding a webinar detailing the proposed updates to the criteria on January 5, 2023 from 2:00 p.m. EST to 3:00 p.m. EST.

Top 10 Behavioral Health Stories of 2022: How ABA Layoffs, Value-Based Care and Dealmaking Defined the Year

The year 2022 saw several growing pains and tough lessons in the behavioral health industry. Two years after the onset of a world-altering pandemic, the behavioral health industry saw adjustments and reactions to a lot of new developments. The industry did so while grappling with several of its chronic headaches such as workforce shortages and payer-reimbursement challenges. Read more here.

Integrating Behavioral Health Services into Primary Care - How One Medicaid Managed Care Plan Made It Work

Why Cityblock Health Believes It Can Break A Mold That Home Health Agencies Can’t

KFF: Many Women Need Mental Health Services But Aren’t Able To Access Them

Advancing Youth Mental Health Solutions By Co-Creating With The Youth Themselves

Value-Based Addiction Treatment Provider Forge Health Lands $10M

How a miracle tool enables severely autistic kids to communicate for the first time

Psychedelic drugs may launch a new era in psychiatric treatment, brain scientists say


Anti-Racism and Mental Health Care

January 5, 10:30 - 11:30 am, CBC Training Insitutue

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

January 5, 2 - 3 pm, NACo

Review of Draft for Public Comment: Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) Certification Criteria

January 5, 2 - 3 pm, SAMHSA

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

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

Introduction to PSYCKES

January 11, 1 - 2 pm, OMH

Prioritizing Tobacco Treatment in Substance Use and Recovery Masterclass

January 17, 2 - 4 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing

Advancing Trauma- and Resilience-Informed Health Care Systems: Early Lessons from Denver Health

January 18, 1:30 - 3 pm, Center for Health Care Strategies

Reframing Language in Behavioral Health Care: New Tools You Can Use

January 18, 2 - 3:30 pm, Hosted by four centers of excellence: Family Support, African American , Aging, and LGBTQ+ behavioral health

PSYCKES for Health Homes and Care Management Agencies

January 24, 10 - 11:30 am, OMH

Where to Start: Getting Access to PSYCKES

January 31, 11 am - 12 pm, OMH

NYS OMH DFS Spotlight of Innovative Diversion Services

February 8, 10:30 am - 12 pm, OMH Division of Forensic Services

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Plus – Building a Culture of Inclusion

February 8, 1 - 2 pm, National Council for Mental Wellbeing



CLMHD Office Closed - New Year's Day

January 2

Executive Committee Meeting

January 4: 8 - 9 am

LGU Clinic Director Call

January 10: 10 - 11:30 am

Addiction Services & Recovery Committee Meeting

January 12: 11 am - 12 pm

Mental Health Committee Meeting

January 12: 3 - 4 pm

CLMHD Office Closed - MLK Jr. Day

January 16

Children & Families Committee Meeting

January 17: 11:30 am - 1 pm

CLMHD Membership Call

January 18: 9 - 10:30 am

The Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors advances public policies and awareness for people with mental illness, chemical dependency and developmental disabilities. We are a statewide membership organization that consists of the Commissioner/ Director of each of the state's 57 county mental hygiene departments and the mental hygiene department of the City of New York.

Affiliated with the NYS Association of Counties (NYSAC)
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