Task Force and Task Force Member Activities
June 4 deadline to apply for behavioral health case management learning collaborative The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center and the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) are offering a virtual Community of Practice for interdisciplinary teams seeking to implement effective criminal case management for people with behavioral health needs. The Community of Practice will include both one-on-one consultation and opportunities for peer learning and sharing. Participating teams will learn how to use relevant data while applying new strategies to improve outcomes throughout the criminal justice system for people with behavioral health needs.
Save the Date – In-person learning opportunities scheduled The Task Force is coordinating site visits for teams interested in directly observing the most innovative programs in the country. The first two site visits will explore the model Crisis Response Center in Pima County (Tucson) Arizona. In addition to the CRC we will also learn about the Jail Population Review process to facilitate jail releases by connecting detainees with behavioral health and support services, and we will explore several diversion programs implemented by Pima County. On-site sessions will be held October 7-8, and November 8-9. Additional site visits are also being scheduled this winter in Miami to see the “Miami Model,” and to Hollywood/Los Angeles to observe their same-day competency process, felony diversion program, and supported housing model. For more information contact Rick Schwermer at firstname.lastname@example.org
Research and Resources
HHS Announces $3 Billion in American Rescue Plan Funding for SAMHSA Block Grants to Address Addiction, Mental Health Crisis SAMHSA is distributing $3 billion in American Rescue Plan funding—the largest aggregate amount of funding to date—for its mental health and substance use block grant programs. The Community Mental Health Services Block Grant (MHBG) Program and Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Program (SABG) will disperse $1.5 billion each to states and territories (with the latter also awarding money to a tribe). This follows the March announcement of supplemental funding of nearly $2.5 billion for these programs. In addition, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra is establishing a new Behavioral Health Coordinating Council, whose primary goal is to facilitate collaborative, innovative, transparent, equitable, and action-oriented approaches to addressing the HHS’ behavioral health agenda.
CCBHC Impact Report Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics have dramatically increased access to mental health and substance use disorder treatment, expanded states’ capacity to address the overdose crisis and established innovative partnerships with law enforcement, schools and hospitals to improve care, reduce recidivism and prevent hospital readmissions. This report contains data collected from CCBHCs that were active as of January 2021, covering 128 of 224 sites and including both demonstration sites as well as CCBHC Expansion grantees.
How to Talk About the COVID-19 Vaccines with Individuals Who Have Serious Mental Illness (SMI) The COVID-19 pandemic presents health and mortality risks for individuals who have serious mental illness (SMI). Recent data show that people who have schizophrenia are nearly three times more likely to die from COVID-19.1 Only age presents a bigger risk factor. This SMI Adviser guide provides simple tips for mental health clinicians on how to talk about the COVID-19 vaccines with individuals who have SMI.
On-Demand Sessions Now Available on Early Psychosis Discover tools, techniques, and best practices that focus on the importance of collaborative work in achieving better outcomes for individuals who experience first-episode psychosis. Now you can access all 20 free sessions from the recent 3rd National Conference on Early Psychosis Care in the United States anytime, on demand.
Early Diversion Virtual Learning Community (Part 4): Developing and Maintaining Collaborative Relationships with Law Enforcement That Survive Changing Times In this webinar, presenters will describe how community partnerships with law enforcement, such as Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) programs, have adapted to address the needs of individuals in crisis who are in, or at risk of, contact with law enforcement. Guidelines will be introduced for communities to consider in order to adapt and grow these relationships.
GAINS Announcement re Teleservices in Drug Courts Virtual Learning Community SAMHSA's GAINS Center will host a virtual learning community on the future of Teleservices in summer 2021. Open-format discussion groups will allow webinar participants to take a deeper dive into the material and pose questions to the speakers.
New Webinar Available: The Future of Teleservices in Drug Courts Part 1 Treatment court practitioners are now beginning to contemplate strategic directions for a post-pandemic service model. Part I of this three-part Virtual Learning Community presents a retrospective view of the transition to teleservices from the perspective of treatment court practitioners, a review of the mounting evidence-base for teleservices in treatment court settings, commentary on the potential for enhancing best practice standards through the use of teleservices, and results of a nationwide survey of treatment courts regarding practice modifications, implementation barriers, effective innovations, and intent to continue the use of teleservices.
Revolving Doors of Hospitalization and Incarceration: How Perceptions of Procedural Justice Affect Treatment Outcomes This Article compares the levels of procedural justice afforded to persons with severe mental illness in the civil and criminal systems, either via involuntary commitment in state psychiatric hospitals in the civil system or via mental health court as an alternative to incarceration in the criminal system. The underlying premise is that the higher the level of perceived procedural fairness, the higher the likelihood that a person with acute mental illness will comply with treatment. This Article ultimately suggests that certain aspects of procedural due process in the mental health court model should be utilized in the civil commitment system in order to effect positive treatment outcomes by increasing perceived levels of procedural fairness and resultant buy-in to treatment.
How U.S. Society has Treated Those with Mental Illnesses Persons with mental illness are incarcerated in prisons across the United States at disproportionate rates compared to the general population. Understanding why this is so requires an examination of how society in general has treated persons with mental illnesses. This article relates a history of neglect and stigmatization in examining the entities responsible for care of persons with mental illnesses, including the family, asylums and prisons. The article identifies trends of institutionalization, deinstitutionalization, and transinstitutionalisation, whereby large amounts of inpatients with mental illnesses moved out of psychiatric institutions, into the streets, and then into the criminal justice system. The article also analyses socioeconomic factors bearing on mental illness as a cause of crime, the high arrest rates and prison conditions experienced by those with mental illness, and public perceptions and myths about persons with mental illnesses.
Research Roundup: Incarceration can cause lasting damage to mental health Incarceration can trigger and worsen symptoms of mental illness — and those effects can last long after someone leaves the prison gates. As Dr. Seymour L. Halleck has observed, “The prison environment is almost diabolically conceived to force the offender to experience the pangs of what many psychiatrists would describe as mental illness.”
TAC Research Weekly: May Research Roundup By age 66, one in four individuals with schizophrenia will have dementia. According to a recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry, by 66 years of age, 27.9% of individuals with schizophrenia will have a dementia diagnosis compared with 1.3% of individuals without schizophrenia. This trend continues as individuals get older, according to the results. At 80 years of age, 70.2% of individuals with schizophrenia will have a dementia diagnosis, compared to 11.3% of individuals without schizophrenia. The study authors suggest these results may be due to the cognitive and functional decline that can impact those with schizophrenia, which can increase the risk and exacerbate symptoms of dementia.
Targeted Resource Mapping Toolkit: Mapping Resources Along a Continuum of Services to Address Substance Use Disorders The Mapping Toolkit includes templates to develop a Targeted Resource Map (resource map), Targeted Resource Directory (resource directory) and Targeted Resource Mapping Action Plan (action plan). The Mapping Toolkit is intended to encourage and provide guidance to courts that are seeking to better understand existing resources, identify and address service gaps, and build relationships with providers in their community.
MAT in Drug Courts Virtual Learning Community: Introducing the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) MOUD Toolkit This webinar will introduce the medication for opioid use disorder (MOUD) toolkit, which was developed with funding from the Office of National Drug Control Policy and was recently released by NADCP. The toolkit presents practical tools and resources for treatment court teams and will assist teams in their efforts to make critical connections with local jails and treatment providers. The emphasis of this webinar will be on fostering partnerships and developing agreements to ensure access to community-based treatment services and supports for drug court participants.
Mental Awareness Health Month: 3 stark facts As Mental Health Awareness Month comes to a close, PEW spotlights three facts that highlight just how pressing—and pervasive—psychological distress is today.
The NIMH Saga Continues: How Many People Have Schizophrenia? Since attempting to make 2 million individuals with schizophrenia disappear in 2017, NIMH has continued to rely on studies that directly contradict its own claims, thus embarrassing itself yet again.
JPLI Newsletter Recent news stories, publications, and resources from the Judges and Psychiatrists Leadership Initiative, including information about a CSG Justice Center webinar, Achieving Cultural Competency in Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice.
CSG Justice Center Justice Briefing Includes links to funding opportunities through the American Rescue Plan, and a virtual mental health training for juvenile justice.
PTACC Ticker Deflection and diversion resources from the Police, Treatment and Community Collaborative.
NASMHPD Weekly Update Resources, learning opportunities, and news from the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors.
Mental Wellbeing Weekly - News, Resources and Learning Opportunities From the National Council for Mental Wellbeing.
Children and Family Futures - Resources to Support Mental Health Awareness Month To support those facing mental health issues—including substance use disorders (SUDs)—case workers, court professionals, and others are encouraged to learn more about the array of available services and take action to ensure parents have quick, timely access to the treatment they need.
NAMI Ask the Expert: Help, Not Handcuffs Part 2: Legislation & Community Models FAQ This webinar featured an overview of 988 legislation and the CAHOOTS (Crisis Assistance Helping Out On The Streets) model of community crisis response. Because we received such a high volume of complex questions during the live webinar, our presenters contributed to the creation of the Frequently Asked Questions document.
One Mind: Resources and Services Whether you're seeking to learn more about brain health conditions, help a friend in need, or improve workplace mental health at your organization, One Mind can help you find the resources and services that you need.
In the News
Miami Center for Mental Health and Recovery Nearing completion, this 208-bed Center will serve individuals with mental health and substance use disorders diverted from the criminal justice system or at risk for being taken into the criminal justice system. The Center will offer a comprehensive continuum of mental health, substance use, and primary healthcare services targeting high-cost, high-need individuals who are most often underserved by the public health system.
The Real History of America's Failed Mental-Health-Care System A popular theory links the closing of state psychiatric hospitals to the increased incarceration of people with mental illness. But the reality is more complicated. And America has gone without a real system of mental-health care for so long that mental illness is often seen as a permanent feature of the criminal-justice system.
Addiction Should Be Treated, Not Penalized Abundant data show that Black people and other communities of color have been disproportionately harmed by decades of addressing drug use as a crime rather than as a matter of public health. We have known for decades that addiction is a medical condition—a treatable brain disorder—not a character flaw or a form of social deviance. Yet, despite the overwhelming evidence supporting that position, drug addiction continues to be criminalized. The US must take a public health approach to drug addiction now, in the interest of both population well-being and health equity.
HHS Says Behavioral Health Will Become A Top Priority. $3 Billion In New Funding. Let’s Hope It’s Spent Wisely The $3 billion will be distributed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) through block grants to the states. It will be equally divided with $1.5 billion earmarked for “those with severe mental health conditions” and children with serious emotional disturbances – known respectively as SMIs and SEDs. The other $1.5 billion will flow into substance use disorder programs.
Utah on the verge of becoming a leader in mental health care Included in the budget allocations was a sizable chunk, $90 million, that along with $65 million in private donations will build a new integrated mental health research center near the University of Utah campus. His team of researchers will have a new, powerful weapon of sorts at their disposal — the first 7-Tesla MRI machine in the region and the only one in the country devoted to the brain. The 7-T will let researchers witness changes in brain chemistry in very specific regions and monitor functions that may signal psychiatric disorders or neurological disorders.
‘We have a capacity problem’: The number of court-ordered hospitalizations at Eastern State Hospital has soared Over the last three years Eastern State has seen a surge in admissions from the court system and jails. A quiet tweak to state criminal procedure law, approved unanimously by the General Assembly in 2017, has sent the number of court-ordered cases soaring. The 2017 law set a 10-day deadline for placing individuals found incompetent to stand trial into a state hospital for treatment. But Virginia law allows for competency restoration to be done outside of a hospital, with the mental health services provided by local community services boards — a model other states are looking at — and Hudacek hopes reminding courts of this option might increase use when cases involve nonviolent misdemeanor offenses.
How Montana Is Redesigning Crisis Services in a Rural Landscape Telehealth has the potential to bypass many of Montana’s geographic challenges. Still, there are hurdles. Some places in the state have what’s called “blank areas” with no mobile coverage. Auclair points out that providers will drive where they can to improve the connectivity. “We’re just making it work,” she says.
The Latest from The Kennedy Forum During Mental Health Month 2021, we spoke directly with U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Marty Walsh about the urgent need for parity enforcement, premiered a compelling new infographic about #988 as part of Mental Health Action Day, shined a spotlight on critical in-school mental health supports for kids, and much more.
The Reconnect Wrap News from this week in criminal justice, including Louisiana Drug Court expansion, a new Juvenile Mental Health Diversion Program in Nebraska, and promising numbers from a federal judge’s supervised release program.
Where Are the Psychiatric Beds in a Community? A subgroup of the APA Presidential Task Force on Assessment of Psychiatric Bed Needs in the United States is working on defining the various kinds of psychiatric beds in a community. The task force’s ultimate goal is to create a model to determine the right number of beds for any community.
After slow start, Kern County says reimagined court-ordered mental health treatment program shows promise Passed in 2002, the measure allows a judge to order assisted outpatient treatment to individuals who, among other criteria, have a history of noncompliance and are unlikely to survive in the community without supervision. Not all counties have embraced Laura’s Law. Only 23 counties have opted in so far. The remaining have until July 1 to decide before a state deadline passes.
Monterey County Board of Supervisors follows staff recommendation to opt out of Laura's Law In a controversial vote, Monterey County supervisors decided to move away from a law designed to give more resources to cities and counties tasked with handling their mentally ill. “What I heard from a mom’s perspective, and there are many of us out there that have children that have mental health issues, is ‘we don’t have enough money to support your child.’”
California Uses Budget Surplus for Safety Net Investment As the state enjoys a massive tax windfall, California Gov. Gavin Newsom presented a revised $268 billion budget on Friday that makes several big investments in the state’s social safety net, adding resources for foster youth in schools, beefing up support to vulnerable families in the child welfare system and distributing millions of dollars for behavioral health reforms.
Stakeholders focus on issues plaguing law enforcement, courts Mental health concerns led discussions as Jefferson City community leaders gathered late Tuesday morning to identify gaps and opportunities within the criminal justice system.
Pandemic delays hiring of staff for Columbia mental health crisis unit Nearly a year after Columbia city manager John Glascock announced a new unit to handle emergency calls involving mental health crises, the unit remains unstaffed. The city has struggled to find the licensed clinical social workers necessary to staff the unit.
Mental illness: Families cut out of care Although a federal law on patient privacy was written to protect patients’ rights, the Angells and a growing number of mental health advocates say the law has harmed the care of adults with serious mental illness, who often depend on their families for care, but don’t always recognize that they’re sick or that they need help.
Opioid-Related News and the Courts Weekly Review: May 28, 2021 From the National Center for State Courts.
Want to get the Behavioral Health Alerts newsletter automatically? Subscribe here.
Have comments or feedback about Behavioral Health Alerts? Contact Rick Schwermer at email@example.com