Current Work

We are always working to spread our ideas for hopeful, strength-based, integrated mental health practice to the many communities that need support.

January 2018

February 2018

March 2018

April 2018

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April 2018

Activities in April

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute:   Continued work on finalizing the Houston Endowment substance use disorder System Report and helping to develop MAT TA capacity for Texas. Dr. Minkoff gathering information for the report on the new naltrexone pilot implemented in the Harris County jail, which is an excellent innovation. Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline continue to participate in the HHSC-MMHPI workgroup on substance use disorder policy.

On April 11, Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline joined Coby Chase and LDWW to meet with Bring Change to Mind leadership in San Francisco, as part of MMHPI’s efforts to seek collaborators for the next phase of its highly successful Okay to Say anti-stigma campaign. Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline are contributing content to help develop tools for families and loved ones to provide more effective help and support.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

NATCON 2018 (April 22-25): Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline made four major presentations (averaging 100 attendees each). The topics included:   Implementing an Ideal Crisis System (this is connected to one of the important ISMICC recommendations and the GAP project -see below); Practical Strategies for Implementation of Medication Assisted Treatment; Implementation of Integrated Systems and Services for Individuals with Co-occurring Disorders in the Criminal Justice System, a general overview of principles and practices, and then a hands-on practicum session co-delivered with Judge Steven Leifman. The latter presentations incorporated material from the GAP Report which Dr. Minkoff co-chaired: People with Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help (2106). Dr. Minkoff attended his first meeting as a member of the national Council Medical Director’s Institute and reported to the group on the ISMICC Recommendations and how they could be helpful partners in supporting implementation efforts.

NATCON 2018.

People with Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help

CALM:   Continued telephone consultation to assist with the major implementation areas within the consultation, including improving revenue, addressing documentation challenges, improving the overall organization’s ability to provide a clinical management, training, quality improvement, and supervision structure that reinforces clinical care and values, and addressing the need for better program budgeting to align staff capacity and service expectations.

Vermont Co-operative for Practice Improvement and Innovation (VCPI): VCPI has made a decision to go forward with Northern Vermont University as a new parent partner. The process of transition is proceeding smoothly.   There is planning underway for a new federal grant to support improvement in health and behavioral health integration and trauma-informed care.

Common Ground: Continued consultation to assist in the development of improved capacity for Common Ground to deliver the highest possible quality comprehensive crisis service array in Oakland County, Michigan

Tennessee Co-occurring Strategic Initiative: Planning for 6 days of on-site training, consultation, and technical assistance during May and June.

Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry: On April 12-14, Dr. Minkoff attended the GAP meeting, and co-chaired, with Dr. Jackie Feldman, the Committee on Psychiatry and the Community, continuing work on the project of identifying the specific criteria that define a model crisis system for any community. This work in progress was presented at NATCON, and elicited great interest and energy from many in the audience who are directly attempting to address this issue in their home communities.

Silver Hill Psychiatric Hospital: On April 26, Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline conducted an on-site consultation at Silver Hill to assist the whole organization addressing the improvement of its admission processes and internal collaborations to align with organizational mission and values of customer service and staff well-being. This exciting project resulted from an invitation from our colleague Dr. John Santopietro (from AACP, GAP, and NATCON Medical Director’s Institute), who is the relatively new CEO at Silver Hill, and is bringing a wealth of positive energy to the organization with his leadership.

 

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March 2018

Activities in March

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee: Numerous telephone conferences to discuss how best to implement the ISMICC recommendations.   This culminated in an interdepartmental meeting coordinated by SAMHSA on March 28, where over 50 representatives of multiple federal departments came to organize implementation efforts, along with 4 of the 14 non-federal ISMICC members, including Dr. Minkoff (along with David Covington, Elena Kravitz, and Conni Wells). SAMHSA’s leadership (Assistant Secretary McKance-Katz) made it clear that the ISMICC report is a foundation for much of SAMHSA’s ongoing efforts and has been very successful in engaging not only cooperation but enthusiasm from other federal departments. The attendees gathered into five workgroups, based on the major areas in which the ISMICC recommendations were organized, and developed initial work plans for those recommendations, with input from the non-federal members. This is the first important step in a multi-year process that has the potential to transform the national delivery system for adults and children with severe mental health and substance use issues.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute:   Dr. Minkoff was on site on March 1 to meet with community representatives to discuss an initial outline of recommendations for the Houston substance use disorders system.   The work on the Houston Endowment report is proving invaluable in providing important data on the current system that can result in state and local models for significant improvement in substance use disorder services of all types, with a particular focus on the opioid epidemic. Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline continue to participate in the HHSC-MMHPI workgroup on substance use disorder policy.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

Ballad: A final round of on-site visits on March 6-7, along with meetings with the Ballad Behavioral Health Steering Committee to discuss and refine the 11 major themes identified by the TriWest-Zia team to recommend for Ballad’s investment in behavioral health services per its cooperative agreements with Virginia and Tennessee to support the approval of the merger.   Based on the successful response to the initial themes, the consultation team worked throughout March to provide an initial 121-page report to guide Ballad’s initial 3 years of implementation, which was accepted by Ballad as the final deliverable for the project.

CALM:   Continued telephone consultation to support initial efforts of various quality improvement teams, as well as to help the executive team transition to developing more solid administrative, financial, and HR processes to strengthen the organization and provide a foundation for developing a more solid “trauma-informed” organizational culture as well as improve service delivery capacity.

Vermont Co-operative for Practice Improvement and Innovation (VCPI): Dr. Minkoff has worked with the VCPI leadership to assist in planning for the transition of VCPI from SNHU to a new “parent organization” as well as in helping the maturation of the organization’s leadership and decision making structures and processes.   VCPI continues to grow and has recently acquired resources to support several new statewide projects.

SAMHSA: As a non-federal ISMICC member, and a psychiatrist, Dr. Minkoff was invited to a meeting convened by SAMHSA on March 12 to develop a partnership between SAMHSA and the leadership of the Association of Psychiatric Department Chairs. One of the key topics of this meeting was how departments of psychiatry can be implementation collaborators in the areas of both training and service delivery, at both the national and state levels, to make progress on the ISMICC recommendations.

Common Ground: Continued consultation to assist in the development of improved capacity for Common Ground to deliver the highest possible quality comprehensive crisis service array in Oakland County, Michigan

Tennessee Co-occurring Strategic Initiative: Dr. Minkoff provided a webinar on co-occurring supervision and competency development to the Middle Tennessee regional Co-occurring disorders learning community on March 21.

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February 2018

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee: Beginning efforts to organize the federal interdepartmental implementation process for the ISMICC Recommendations.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute:   Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline contributed to the policy recommendations submitted by MMHPI to the state legislature. Continued work on finalizing recommendations for developing a model for an ideal substance use disorder system for Harris County. In addition, Dr. Minkoff, as a member of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP) has begun a process to link AAAP leadership to MMHPI and Texas addiction psychiatry leaders, in order to create capacity for bringing AAAPs newly funded 12.5 million dollar federal STR-TA grant for medication-assisted treatment expansion to Texas.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

CALM:   Continued telephone consultation to initiate change processes at all levels of the organization, including initiation of quality improvement teams to improve access, supervision, and overall capacity for service delivery.

Ballad: On-site visits on February 5 (for official project launch), and February 12-13, during which ZiaPartners and TriWest conducted interviews with Ballad services throughout the North East Tennesee and South West Virginia regions, as well as meeting with important community providers (particularly Frontier Health, the major Mental Health center in Tennesee and part of Virginia), state leaders in Virginia and Tennesee, and other community stakeholders.

Vermont Co-operative for Practice Improvement and Innovation (VCPI): On February 23, Dr. Minkoff consulted to a half-day meeting of all the co-occurring project teams, to engage the participants in both the final evaluation of the project’s success, as well as in helping to design a continuing co-occurring competency learning community to be supported by state mental health and substance abuse leadership as well as by VCPI.

American Association of Community Psychiatrists: Dr. Minkoff attended the AACP Winter Board meeting in Nashville, TN Feb 9-11. As Chair of the Products and Services Plank, Dr. Minkoff helped to produce a formal position statement developed by the AACP recommending a comprehensive review of the current administrative treatment planning requirements for community mental health service delivery.

SAMHSA: As a result of the above, Dr. Minkoff was invited, along with other AACP members and other stakeholders, to a meeting convened by SAMHSA on February 28 to gather information about the current challenges of treatment planning requirements to determine how SAMHSA could implement such a review that would improve both service quality and customer and staff experience in public behavioral health services.

Common Ground: Continued consultation to assist in the development of improved capacity for Common Ground to deliver the highest possible quality comprehensive crisis service array in Oakland County, Michigan

For more information about common ground click here.

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January 2018

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee:

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute:   Dr. Cline and Dr. Minkoff, along with Sam Shore, began participation in a Texas Health and Human Services Committee joint workgroup with the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute (MMHPI) on substance use disorders, with an initial focus on aligning data and policy recommendations to the House Select Committee. The recommendations to the state legislature continue to be aligned with findings and recommendations from the Houston Endowment funded project to assess the substance use disorders delivery system for Harris County (Houston). Dr. Minkoff has worked to create a summary of evidence-based practices for substance use disorder systems and services, including universal co-occurring capability, which aligns with MMHPI recommendations for the design of an ideal substance use disorder system using a population health framework.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

CALM:   ZiaPartners and TriWest had the first two-day on-site visit with CALM (Child Abuse Listening Mediation, INC) on January 24-25 and were able to get a broad overview of the strengths and improvement opportunities for the whole organization, within each region (South County, North County, Lompoc) and program.   This will be formulated into a change plan that will involve significant telephone support at various levels of the organization leading up to the next on site visit, which is scheduled for May 9-10.

Follow CALM at http://calm4kids.org/  

PROJECT LAUNCH- Ballad Health System Initial on-site and telephone meetings are scheduled for February.

For more information about Ballad Health click here.

Community Mental Health of Central Michigan: On January, 8-9, Dr. Minkoff provided a successful on-site training and consultation on integrated services for individuals and families with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders for this regional multi-county system.

For more information about CMHCM click here.

Vermont Co-operative for Practice Improvement and Innovation (VCPI): Dr. Minkoff provided the final round of TA Conference calls to the six project teams in the statewide project to implement co-occurring competency.

For more information about VCPI click here.

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December 2017

 

Activities in December

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee: (See previous descriptions and links for background). The ISMICC report was finalized, and was made available for public release at the ISMICC meeting in Washington, DC on December 14. Dr. Minkoff and the rest of the ISMICC will be working with SAMHSA and other federal agencies to shepherd the implementation of the recommendations in the report. To review the recommendations in the ISMICC Report, follow this link .

To watch the whole report to congress click here.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute Winter Staff Retreat:    Dr. Cline and Dr. Minkoff participated in the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute winter staff retreat in Dallas on December 6-7.  This was a wonderful opportunity to share the accomplishments that MMHPI has achieved in terms of state and local projects during the past year, and to outline important work to be accomplished during 2018.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute: Houston Endowment Substance Use Disorder System Assessment of Houston/Harris County:  Continued work this month on delineating best practices for Substance Use Disorder prevention and treatment services, and working with the project team on drafting the final report for the Substance Use Disorder System Assessment. The report will be submitted to Houston Endowment in January. Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline are continuing to refine policy recommendations for the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute to submit for consideration to the Texas legislative select committee on Substance Use Disorders.

NEW PROJECT START:   ZiaPartners and its TriWest team members (Kathy Sternbach and Jack Peters) had an initial phone call on December 18 with the leadership team of Child Abuse Listening Mediation, Inc (CALM), a trauma-informed child abuse prevention and intervention agency serving Santa Barbara County. The initial phone call was designed to help outline most important needs and priorities for CALM, and to focus on how we can best help the organization to improve its organizational policies and processes, including revenue enhancement and revenue generation, while maintaining and enhancing its trauma-informed culture, and engaging and empowering all levels of staff as change agents in the process of cultural transformation of the agency. The first on site visit will occur on January 24-25.

NEW PROJECT ANNOUNCEMENTS:  TriWest, with ZiaPartners as subcontracted team members, has received notice of award for two new consultation projects to begin in 2018.  The first is funded by the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Foundation of Massachusetts, and involves working with multiple stakeholders to develop a design for an “ideal Behavioral Health system” for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  The second is funded by the newly forming Ballad Health System, a merger of two large health systems serving North-East Tennessee and South-West Virginia, who are requesting consultation to develop plans for improving behavioral health services in the region, with a particular focus on Substance Use Disorder services, Substance Use Disorder residential treatment, and response to the opioid epidemic. Approval of the merger by both Virginia and Tennessee was contingent on developing this response plan, so this very important project will be positioned to make a major impact on service delivery and design in a highly impacted rural region.  More information on these projects will be shared as the work unfolds during 2018

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!  ZiaPartners wishes all of you a very happy and healthy new year, and looks forward to continued progress throughout 2018 in improving services and systems to meet the needs and respond to the hopes of individuals and families with complex and co-occurring conditions and challenges!

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An Exciting Event!

Our friends with The Harris Project shared some photos and a nice message from our event working with the Mid-Hudson Regional Planning Consortium at the November Leadership forum: “Creating a Welcoming and Integrated, Trauma-Informed System for Addressing Those with Co-occurring Disorders,” led by Dr. Ken Minkoff.

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November 2017

Activities in November

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee:  During November, the ISMICC report was finalized and is scheduled for public release at the next ISMICC meeting, which will be broadcast from Washington DC on December 14. Stay tuned for more information on how to access this live stream broadcast.  Dr. Minkoff will be attending this meeting by teleconference.

Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry:  Committee on Psychiatry and the Community:  As co-chair of this committee comprised of national leaders in community psychiatry, along with Judge Steven Leifman of Miami-Dade County District Court and the Miami-Dade Managing Entity (South Florida Provider Coalition), Dr. Minkoff is helping the Committee align its current project on designing an “ideal behavioral health system” with the potential for implementation represented by ISMICC.  During the most recent GAP meeting (November 9-11), the Committee decided to focus on publishing a framing document for this work during 2018 and to develop a specific set of criteria for an ideal CRISIS system as a first important step in addressing this issue.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute: Houston Endowment Substance Use Disorder System Assessment of Houston/Harris County:  Continued work this month on researching best practices for Substance Use Disorder prevention and treatment services, and working with the project team on finalizing the creation of a framework for the “ideal Substance Use Disorder system of care” that will form the backbone of the report and recommendations for this project.  The “ideal Substance Use Disorder system of care” is represented in a visual diagram that illustrates the links between “Life in the Community,” prevention, early intervention, integration of Substance Use Disorder services in primary health care, co-occurring capable specialty care in Substance Use Disorders, Mental Health, and specialty health settings of all kinds, and ongoing recovery coaching and recovery support. Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline have helped to draft policy recommendations for Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute to submit for consideration to the Texas legislative select committee on Substance Use Disorders.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

Mid-Hudson Region Seven County Collaboration to Implement CCISC:  On November 13-14, ZiaPartners facilitated a very successful launch of a seven-county regional project to launch welcoming, co-occurring capable systems of care in Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester counties in NY.    Approximately 150 people, representing 7 county teams, with coordination by Marcie Colon of the Mid-Hudson Regional Coalition, and participation from state representatives, representatives from the other regional coalitions in NY, and from the state-funded Center for Practice Innovations at Columbia University, attended this two-day event in Fishkill, NY. Each county team learned about how to implement universal co-occurring capability in their county system and committed to take action based on next steps identified in this event.   This is the largest such effort ever in NY State and the first time in any state that seven counties have launched a regional collaboration all at once, without state direction.   Stephanie Marquesano, of the Harris Project, provided an impassioned keynote speech in honor of her son, Harris, who suffered from co-occurring disorders and died of an overdose because of lack of availability of integrated treatment. Stephanie’s tireless advocacy and training efforts played a significant role in creating the momentum that led to this event.

Criminal Justice-Behavioral Health Forum:  Massachusetts Association of Mental Health/Blue Cross-Blue Shield Foundation:  On November 9, Dr. Minkoff was one of three national panelists at this important event to raise awareness and organize statewide action to address the growing numbers of individuals in Massachusetts correctional settings with mental illness and/or substance use disorders.  The other panelists were Andrew Keller, Ph.D, CEO of the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute, and Judge Steven Leifman from Miami, the nation’s leading judge in advocating for improved Behavioral Health services to keep people out of the criminal justice system.  Dr. Minkoff’s topic focused on describing the recent GAP publication:  People with Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help (APPI, 2016), and discussing a framework for how to provide integrated services to individuals with co-occurring mental health, substance use, and criminal justice needs, as well as other complex challenges.

National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) Criminal Justice Policy Forum:   On November 16, Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline participated with two dozen other invited national leaders in a day-long meeting in Arlington, VA to develop actionable strategies for helping NAMI to support its local chapters in advocating effectively for addressing the challenges facing people with mental illness in the criminal justice system.   Mary Giliberti, NAMI’s Executive Director, is also a member of ISMICC.  Pete Earley, author of Crazy: A Father’s Search Through America’s Mental Health Madness, about his son’s experiences with mental illness in the criminal justice system, and also an ISMICC member, was another one of the attendees.  

Alberta Health Services Concurrent Capability Project:  During the past seven years, Alberta Health Services has gradually developed a provincial strategy for using the ZiaPartners’ CCISC toolkit to enhance concurrent disorder capability across all provincial behavioral health services. The designated Concurrent Capable Review Service is a Provincial Addiction and Mental Health service that provides support to leaders and programs who want to access and make planned improvements towards welcoming, recovery-oriented and concurrent capable care. In November, the Concurrent Capable Review Service Team released materials that demonstrated the results of their process to date, with penetration into 3 of the 5 “zones” in the province, and plans for expansion into the other zones in the coming year or two.   They gave permission for ZiaPartners to post their results and materials for others to take advantage of, with the proviso that the involved zones were “de-identified” as Zone A and Zone B instead of their actual names.  The main contact person at AHS regarding this material is Jackie Clark.   She and her team have done an amazing job making systemic progress and envision continued advances ahead as more Zones join the effort.

Review Poster for IOS Conference
Central Zone Summary
Edmonton Zone Summary
Flip Chart
 Compass EZ Facilitators Guide
Compass EZ Participant Handout

NEW PROJECT ANNOUNCEMENT!!!   ZiaPartners is pleased to announce that we have been awarded a consulting contract to assist Child Abuse Listening Mediation, Inc (CALM), a trauma-informed child abuse prevention and intervention agency serving Santa Barbara County. The focus of the consultation (which will begin in January) will be helping CALM at all levels of the organization to improve its organizational policies and processes, including revenue enhancement and revenue generation, while maintaining and enhancing its trauma-informed culture, and engaging and empowering all levels of staff as change agents in the process of cultural transformation of the agency.  Dr. Minkoff and Dr. Cline are pleased as well to be joined on the consultation team by Kathy Sternbach and Jack Peters from TriWest Group, to contribute specific expertise on IT, billing, claims management, supervision, and organizational infrastructure.

 

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October 2017

Activities in October

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee: (See previous descriptions and links for background). During October, the ISMICC group (of which Dr. Minkoff is a member) has kicked into high gear by organizing five major workgroups to provide input to the first ISMICC report to Congress that is due in mid-December.  The five workgroups focus on: Access and Engagement; Continuum of Treatment and Recovery Supports; Reduction of CJ/JJ Involvement; Quality and Data; and Financing.   All workgroups focus on ALL age groups, including children, transitional age youth, adults, and older adults.   ISMICC has formally identified a long-term mission, which is that through interdepartmental federal leadership and collaboration, in partnership with states, tribes, and counties, to transform the behavioral health system nationwide so that people with serious needs get the help that is necessary to make progress toward hopeful, meaningful lives.  In addition to the input provided directly by ISMICC members, Dr. Minkoff facilitated receiving formal input from the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD), the National Council of Community Behavioral Health Care, and the American Association of Community Psychiatrists (AACP). After repeated iterations by ISMICC, the final draft of the report was completed and submitted for Federal “content clearance” on November 3.  Stay tuned for more information as this important effort unfolds.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute: Houston Endowment Substance Use Disorder System Assessment of Houston/Harris County:  Continued work this month on researching best practices for Substance Use Disorder services, and working with the project team on beginning the creation of a framework for the “ideal Substance Use Disorder system of care” that will form the backbone of the report and recommendations for this project.  The “ideal Substance Use Disorder system of care” has been turned into a visual diagram that illustrates the links between “Life in the Community”, prevention, early intervention, integration of Substance Use Disorder services in primary health care, co-occurring capable specialty care in Substance Use Disorders, Mental Health, and specialty health settings of all kinds, and ongoing recovery coaching and recovery support. Dr. Minkoff has supplied a narrative description of the ideal system that will be used to not only guide the report to the Houston Endowment on Harris County but will also be used by MMHPI to provide policy guidance to Texas leadership. The Texas legislature has empaneled a Select Committee on Substance Use Disorders (with a particular focus on the opioid epidemic), and this work will contribute to identifying findings and recommendations that can have statewide policy impact.

Follow MMHPI at www.texastateofmind.org

Common Ground, Oakland County, MI:  Dr. Minkoff provided two days of staff training and consultation to help this innovative crisis program serving Oakland and surrounding counties improve its ability to address the needs of individuals with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, as well as to more effectively design the flow of clients with complex needs through their continuum of services – which includes a crisis intervention center, mobile crisis, crisis residential unit, and a sobering center.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, ON:  CAMH is the premier institution for service, training, and research in Canada, and provides a wide array of services in Toronto, but also tertiary services that are directed toward the province of Ontario and the nation as a whole.  CAMH has undergone a comprehensive strategic planning effort to improve its ability to delivery person-centered integrated care and has a new leadership team to implement its strategic vision. Dr. Minkoff was asked to provide one day of training and consultation to all the service divisions in CAMH to help identify a collective vision based on universal progress toward concurrent capability, and to illustrate steps that could be taken to make progress in addressing the clinical, programmatic, and organizational challenges of this large organization with many competing priorities. The visit was extraordinarily successful and is expected to result in ongoing collaboration with ZiaPartners in implementation.

College for Behavioral Health Leadership, Denver, CO.   Dr. Minkoff has just been elected to the Board of Directors of this amazing organization, which has inspired Behavioral Health leaders of all types for many decades. CBHL is working on a new strategy to grow the organization’s reach, and Dr. Minkoff is one of three new board members who has been brought on to provide “fresh ideas”. The board meeting was held at the annual “convening” of CBHL, which provided an exciting forum focused on the application of “design thinking” on complex behavioral health system challenges.

Institute for Psychiatric Services, New Orleans, LA.  The IPS is the annual American Psychiatric Association meeting that focuses on community psychiatry services. Dr. Cline and Dr. Minkoff presented a workshop on “Changing the World” by implementing universal co-occurring/complexity capability and were joined by Dr. Aniedi Udofa, MD. DABPN, Medical Director of Capital Area Human Services, which is the primary safety net community behavioral health organization serving Baton Rouge and the surrounding region. Dr. Udofa did an amazing job sharing the work that Capital Area launched after a presentation by ZiaPartners ten years ago, under the leadership of Jan Kadofsky, CEO, that has led to steady progress in building capacity to provide integrated services for individuals with co-occurring mental health, Substance Use Disorders, and health conditions throughout the organization.   Dr. Minkoff also joined with Drs. Fred Osher, Jackie Feldman, and Stephanie LeMelle in a symposium of their Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry (GAP) Report, entitled People with Mental Illness in the Justice System: Answering a Cry for Help – a practice manual for practitioners (American Psychiatric Press, Inc. 2016).  The presentation involved reading Dear Abby letters that contributed to the book and then illustrating how the manual provides specific guidance for ANY practitioner to take steps to make a difference – in your own work, in your agency, and in your community.   Everyone was encouraged to find at least one thing that they would change inside their own “Serenity Prayer of Change”, as well as encouraged to get their community involved in the nationwide county-based “Stepping Up Initiative.”

Florida Criminal Justice Behavioral Health Technical Assistance Center webinar:  Dr. Minkoff did a webinar on co-occurring services within the criminal justice/behavioral health system, illustrating how all services have to be designed to address co-occurring challenges, including mental health, Substance Use Disorders, cognitive disabilities, and criminogenic risk behavior.   This webinar was coordinated by Mark Engelhardt of the Florida Mental Health Institute and reached over 20 Florida counties that are working in local collaboratives to effect change.

Tennessee Co-occurring Disorders Strategic Initiative:  ZiaPartners is continuing to work with the Tennessee Association of Mental Health Organizations and the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services leadership to identify next steps to advance statewide progress in implementing co-occurring capability.   

Mid-Hudson Region Seven County Collaboration to Implement CCISC:  Last, but certainly not least, ZiaPartners has finalized the planning for a launch of a seven-county regional project to launch welcoming, co-occurring capable systems of care in Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester.    Approximately 200 people, representing 7 county teams, with participation from state and regional managed care (DSRIP anchor agencies) representatives, will be attending this two-day event November 13-14 in Fishkill, NY. Each county team has committed to take action based on next steps identified in this event.   This is the largest such effort ever in NY State and the first time in any state that seven counties have launched a regional collaboration all at once, without state direction.

Stay tuned!!!!

 

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September 2017

Tennessee Co-occurring Disorders Strategic Initiative:  

As part of Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Strategic Initiative to work in partnership with the Tennessee Association of Mental Health Organizations, and the Tennessee Association of Drug and Alcohol Services to implement statewide co-occurring capability, Dr. Minkoff provided on-site training and technical assistance to the three regional learning communities that have been formed to help providers use their experiences with the COMPASS-EZ to make progress.

The events were held in Memphis, Nashville, and Knoxville, and included hands-on practice exercises that helped participants understand how to implement integrated stage-matched treatment planning, and to develop specific achievable program improvement plans.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute for Texas – Engage and Excel Conference:

 The Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute second annual Engage and Excel conference (Austin, September 20-22) was essentially designed by Drs. Cline and Minkoff as a “local system UnConvention” for Texas communities.   The event was planned and implemented this year by the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute Local Systems Team:  Casie Wenmohs, Lacrica Olson, and Coby Chase, along with assistance from the entire Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute’s staff. Representatives from community collaboratives and behavioral health leadership teams from all over Texas came together with state legislators (including Senator Cornyn), state policy leaders (such as Sonya Gaines, the Assistant Commissioner for Behavioral Health from the Health and Human Services Commission), and state and national experts for three days of conversation, empowerment, and networking.

This year’s event was more than twice as large (almost 300 attendees) with many more communities represented than the first event in 2016, and was regarded as a dramatic success in terms of both content and inspiration.  Drs. Cline and Minkoff served as the inspirational masters of ceremonies for the event, helping the audience to experience the power and value of the impact that the local system “movement” is having on state policy, as well as floating to the various sessions to help coordinate the learning and impact.  For more information, go to the Engage and Excel Page.

Beaver County Behavioral Health:

 On September 26-27, as part of ZiaPartners’ long-standing consultative support to Beaver County’s recovery-oriented, trauma-informed integrated system transformation process, Dr. Minkoff spent two days providing training and technical assistance to various working groups and key stakeholder audiences.  This included one day with a primary focus on working with the Opioid Task Force and providing technical assistance to the strategic planning efforts of multiple workgroups ranging from treatment, to data collection, to law enforcement.   

The second day involved provision of technical assistance to a countywide peer movement working toward developing a “recovery-oriented system of care”, including a Recovery Community Organization working to engage individuals with substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health needs. The final event was a large system training on the provision of co-occurring disorder services for transitional aged youth.

Association of Persons Affected by Addiction (APAA): 

On September 28, Dr. Minkoff followed up his on-site visit with APAA in August, with a teleconference with the APAA leadership team to discuss the draft co-occurring program descriptions and procedures that he had written.  The leadership team was very supportive of the draft policies, and worked out a plan to share with all staff in various meetings for purpose of discussion and input, and then plan a return visit by Dr. Minkoff on November 8 to have a hands-on training about the implementation of co-occurring capable interventions in the context of peer services in a recovery community organization

Riley’s Wish Presentation – Atlanta, GA:  

Dr. Minkoff provided a keynote address on September 29 to the first “Riley’s Wish” conference on co-occurring disorders. Riley was a young man with co-occurring obsessive-compulsive disorder and addiction who tragically committed suicide.  His mother established a foundation in his name to raise awareness and change availability of integrated services for young people with co-occurring conditions.  Kennesaw State University in Marietta, Georgia, outside of Atlanta, is a key partner in this endeavor.

Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute: Houston Endowment Substance Use Disorder System Assessment of Houston/Harris County:

 Continued work this month on researching best practices for Substance Use Disorder services, and working with the project team on beginning the creation of a framework for the “ideal Substance Use Disorder system of care” that will form the backbone of the report and recommendations for this project.

Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee: 

Following the official launch meeting on August 31, the ISMICC group (of which Dr. Minkoff is a member) has kicked into high gear by organizing five major workgroups to provide input to the first ISMICC report to Congress that is due in mid-December.  The five workgroups focus on: Access and Engagement; Continuum of Treatment and Recovery Supports; Reduction of Criminal Justice and Juvenile Justice Involvement; Quality and Data; and Financing.   All workgroups focus on ALL age groups, including children, transitional age youth, adults, and older adults.   ISMICC is a highly motivated and capable group, and spent September getting organized to provide concrete and actionable recommendations by which the various federal departments can work collaboratively with each other, in partnership with states, tribes, and counties, to implement a strategic approach to transform the behavioral health system so that people with serious needs get the help that is necessary to make progress toward hopeful, meaningful lives.  The first draft of the report will be produced by SAMHSA’s writers in October and then will be rapidly iterated to a final draft by the first of November.  Stay tuned for more information as this important effort unfolds.  

ISMICC is a highly motivated and capable group, and spent September getting organized to provide concrete and actionable recommendations by which the various federal departments can work collaboratively with each other, in partnership with states, tribes, and counties, to implement a strategic approach to transform the behavioral health system so that people with serious needs get the help that is necessary to make progress toward hopeful, meaningful lives.  The first draft of the report will be produced by SAMHSA’s writers in October and then will be rapidly iterated to a final draft by the first of November.  Stay tuned for more information as this important effort unfolds.  

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