Kansas Mental
Health Coalition

The Governor's Mental Health Initiative

  • March 11, 2013 2:13 PM
    Message # 1239819
    Amy Campbell (Administrator)

    Mental health funding has been cut again and again since FY 08.  Although you often hear that $20 million was cut from mental health reform grants to the Community Mental Health Centers in past years, we forget the many other reductions to MediKan, general assistance, and children’s programs.

    • The Kansas Mental Health Coalition supported the restoration of $5 million to mental health reform grants last year.  This restoration is deleted in the Governor’s budget recommendation.  We also supported the restoration of the Family Centered Systems of Care funding in the Children’s Initiatives Fund last session.  This program is also deleted in the Governor’s budget recommendation.
    • The Governor’s Mental Health Initiative proposes to invest $9.75 million toward “at risk” Kansans and to initiate a review of the mental health system for further recommendations.  This initiative, in essence, restores the two mental health cuts - but also promises to do much more with this money. 

    The Kansas Mental Health Coalition supports the Governor's Mental Health Initiative, but we do not have sufficient details today to tell you how this initiative will provide needed improvements to our system and still provide the important services to the 6000 families served by the Family Centered Systems of Care program.

    We look forward to being a part of the discussions with the KS Dept on Aging and Disability Services about how new regional service centers could be charged with providing evidence based treatment programs, but believe that current consumers and families need to pay attention. 

    Will this new initiative reduce programs that are now available locally in order, making them only available at a regional center?  Will regionally based crisis services provide a variety of services, or center on 3 to 5 day stays based on "medication management and discharge"?  This is an oversimplified description of the way some intake centers across the country are operated today.

    How is this proposal going to reduce reliance on state hospital beds?

    Can this initiative be used to make evidence based practices like peer services, supported employment and access to housing more available across the state?  With no additional resources, how is that possible?

    The Coalition appreciates the Governor’s action, and the continued communication and engagement of Secretary Shawn Sullivan and the Department on Aging and Disability Services.  We look forward to building on the research and recommendations of the Governor’s Mental Health Services Planning Council and the Hospital and Home Committee to improve access and treatment for the uninsured and underinsured, and expand the availability of quality mental health services for all Kansans.

    This is an important time in our history, as people all across the country focus on the tragic consequences that can occur when mental illness is not treated.  While there is no single cause of the Newtown tragedy, this is an opportunity for in-depth examination of what we can and must do better to provide access and treatment to those who are in need.  Hopefully, we will be able to do something meaningful here, and avoid over-simplified strategies that focus on saving money instead of saving lives.

     

     

  • July 28, 2016 9:50 PM
    Reply # 4162334 on 1239819

    How many new RN's have been hired since the pay raise was appropriated?

    Is there an email list for GBHSPC meetings and subcommittee meetings?

    Updated KDADS website?


(c) Kansas Mental Health Coalition, P.O. Box 4103, Topeka, KS  66604-0103         785-969-1617

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