Florida pilot program to coordinate mental health services

Florida pilot program to coordinate mental health services BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS •   OCTOBER 29, 2015 FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) – State officials are launching a pilot program aimed at better coordinating mental health services. Broward County is the first of three communities in the pilot program ordered by Gov. Rick Scott and administered by the Department of Children and Families. The goal is to create a statewide model for a coordinated system for behavioral health services. State officials say the current system is too fragmented. DCF recently hosted a planning meeting in Broward County and created a local committee to lead the efforts, which will focus primarily on criminal justice diversion efforts. The committee is charged with assessing the current system, identifying goals and recommending models for coordinated care and refinements to the budget process. Republished via: COPYRIGHT 2014 FORT MYERS BROADCASTING COMPANY http://www.winknews.com/2015/10/29/florida-pilot-program-to-coordinate-mental-health-services/

The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention –

 Facts and Myths on suicide 32 yrs. and updated 16 years ago have not change. Reade what the surgeon general has to say about it. In April of 1998, the U.S. Surgeon-General commissioned report on suicide in America. Dr. David Satcher declared to a meeting of the American Society of Suicidology, “I’m convinced that we can shape a different future for this country as it relates to mental health and as it relates to suicide.” Mental disorders also are tragic contributors to mortality, with suicide perennially representing one of the leading preventable causes of death in the United States and worldwide. There is a lot of information and misinformation surrounding the issues of suicide. Suicide awareness groups are trying to reach the public with the proper information about suicide. Below is an excerpt of fables and facts about suicide, according to Dr Bill Blackburn, author of the 1982 book, What You Should Know About Suicide, p.44-47:  32 year old facts – review them and adapt them to 2014 Fable:   People who talk about suicide won’t do it. Fact:      It is estimated that about 80% of persons who take their lives have given signals about their intentions.          Suicide threats should always be taken seriously.     Fable:   Mentioning suicide may give the person the idea. Fact:     For a person who is considering suicide, having someone to talk the idea out with can be a powerful    preventive. If the person has not thought about suicide but is obviously anxious or depressed, to […]

Florida Shifts Medicaid Mental Health Strategy 

This KHN story also ran in . It can be republished for free. (details) Seeking to improve care and lower costs, Florida this month became the first state to offer a Medicaid health plan designed exclusively for people with serious mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, major depression or bipolar conditions. The plan — offered by Avon, Conn.-based Magellan Complete Care — is part of a wave of state experimentation to coordinate physical and mental health care for those enrolled in Medicaid. Mental illness is a big driver of Medicaid costs because it is twice as prevalent among beneficiaries of the public insurance program for the poor as it is among the general population. Studies show that enrollees with mental illness, who also have chronic physical conditions, account for a large share of Medicaid spending. Yet many Medicaid programs, including Florida’s, have traditionally contracted with separate companies to provide coverage for mental health services, making coordination more difficult.  “We don’t want to have a situation where your brain is in one HMO, your teeth are in a second HMO and your eyes are in a third HMO,” said Florida Medicaid Director Justin Senior. “Your whole head should be in the same organization and that is why we have done this reorganization.” About 140,000 low-income Floridians are expected to be eligible and Magellan predicts about 20,000 will participate voluntarily in the first year.  Medicaid recipients who meet the plan’s criteria will automatically be assigned to it by the state, though they have […]

Mental Health

The SAMH Program is the legislatively appointed state authority for substance abuse, mental health, and methadone designation. The program is governed by Chapters 394 and 397 of the Florida Statutes and is responsible for the oversight of a statewide system of care for the prevention, treatment, and recovery of children and adults with serious mental illnesses or substance abuse disorders.

3.6 million Floridians Expected to Have Food Stamp Cuts

About 3.6 million Floridians who use food stamps to purchase their monthly groceries will see a cut in their benefits come Nov. 1, the Orlando Sentinel reports.  This round of cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will leave a family of four with approximately $36 less per month. The cuts are coming because federal stimulus spending ordered during the Great Recession is coming to an end. http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/os-food-stamps-cut-20131022,0,7722759.story The 3.6 million Floridians who rely on food stamps each month will see their benefits cut on Nov. 1 — and bigger cuts might be coming. The initial reduction in food-stamp benefits — known as SNAP for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — is the result of an end to federal stimulus spending passed in 2009 to boost the economy during the Great Recession. Though the amount of the cuts varies according to family size, income and expenses, a family of four will receive about $36 less each month, or $432 less per year.