Advocacy E-News September 5, 2017
September 5, 2017
STATE SCHEDULES MENTAL HEALTH MERGER FORUMS
Following the Governor’s announcement that mental health and addictions services will be transferred from the Department of Human Services to the Department of Health (DOH), the DOH and the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) is holding forums in each county to gather feedback on how to better facilitate integration and ensure that regulations support the streamlining of mental health and addictions services into the Department of Health. Their announcements states that they will be taking questions or comments about this reorganization.
NATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION WEEK EVENT
The NJ Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services Commemorates National Suicide Prevention Week on September 12th : “Take a Minute, Change a Life.” War Memorial, 1 Memorial Drive, Trenton, NJ, 8:30 a.m. – 4:15 p.m.
SERIOUS MENTAL ILLNESS COMMITTEE HAS ITS WORK CUT OUT
The federal government’s new committee on serious mental illness certainly has no shortage of issues to sort through, if its first meeting is any indication. The group, officially known as the Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee, met on Thursday for the first time.
Committee chair Eleanor McCance-Katz, MD, PhD, assistant secretary for mental health and substance use at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), laid out some of the committee’s charges. Access to care and recovery support services are an ongoing challenge, McCance-Katz continued. “The estimates are that 35% of people with mental illness get no treatment at all.
CDC FINDS DISTRESSING JUMP IN SUICIDE RATE FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS
Suicide rates among middle school students have doubled nationally in recent years, and local educators and mental health professionals said raising awareness of this issue is critical, as is making sure young students feel heard and valued. The suicide rate among children between the ages of 10 and 14 doubled between 2007 and 2014, according to a study released earlier this summer by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
NEARLY HALF OF NJ HOMELESS HAVE A DISABILITY, WITH MENTAL ILLNESS BEING THE MOST PREVALENT
According to this year’s NJCounts “Point in Time” (PIT) survey–an annual count of homeless statewide–the number of homeless persons counted in New Jersey has decreased by 409. However, the slight decrease in homelessness in New Jersey is a positive result, the reality is that the size of the homeless population has remained relatively the same from 2016 to 2017. In fact, the number of chronically homeless rose over 30%, according to the study.