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Friday Update 12-20-13

Greetings faithful readers. It is indeed a hustle and bustle week with major holidays looming, end of year gatherings being prepped for, and oh yes, a lot of talk about budgets, cuts, and general angst about the direction children's mental health is headed in. Sounds to me like it is a good time to take a breath, relax, take it easy, reflect a bit, charge the batteries and move forward. With that in mind, what could be more important than a lesson on the importance of relaxing and takin' it easy. Enjoy the video and then get back to Friday Update cuz as usual, we have a cornucopia of goodies for you to feast on.

Most important reads for this week

Time to dig deep…. At least clean out the lint in your pockets
Thanks to all of you who dug deep into your back pockets last week to make a tax-deductible donation to the Children's Mental Health Network. For those of you who haven't contributed yet, no worries, there are still two more weeks to donate to the Network instead of the taxman. Remember, to ensure our independence we do not take government funds. It allows us to both celebrate the good things being done in federal government and provide tough love when needed. Beyond that, we pride ourselves on bringing you news that is relevant to you each and every week. Can you believe we have sent out Friday Update for 83 straight weeks and counting? Yowzer. That's gotta at least be worth a tax-deductible donation to help keep Friday Update coming to your inbox. We average donations about $25.00. As a small non-profit every dollar counts. As we approach the end of the year it is time to ask you to consider making a donation to the Children's Mental Health Network. If everyone reading this gave $5.00 we would not have to ask again for another year. So wadda ya say? Friday Update rocks (at least that's what you keep telling us) so dig deep and donate 5 bucks to help keep it going. Click here to show your support and thanks again. Friday Update will always remain free. Help us ensure it stays that way for another year. Thank you!

Youth M.O.V.E. National is hiring!
Youth M.O.V.E. National is looking for a Director of Technical Assistance and Evaluation to work full time (38 hours per week) but ya gotta move quick. The deadline to get your resume in is December 27th!

Voices for Healthy Kids
Voices for Healthy Kids is a new collaboration between the American Heart Association and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation working to engage, organize and mobilize people to improve the health of their communities and reverse the childhood obesity epidemic. There are now more than 23.5 million children and teens in the U.S. who are overweight or obese. Voices for Healthy Kids is focused on advocating for changes to local, state, and federal policies in order to help young people eat healthier foods and be more active. This is a great initiative worth checking out.

Key questions regarding the treatment of Bipolar Disorder
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Effective Health Care Program has posted key questions regarding the treatment of Bipolar Disorder on their website. Network faithful with an interest in Bipolar Disorder are encouraged to review the research questions and provide comments.

Registration is now open for the 27th Annual Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference   
Letters to those who submitted proposals will go out next week. We can't wait to share the agenda with you. It is simply amazing. Time to start packin' for the 27th Annual Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference in Tampa, Florida March 2 - 5, 2014. Looking forward to seeing you there.

Georgetown Training Institutes - are you ready?
Be sure to put July 16 - 20, 2014 on your calendar and get ready for the premier training event in children's mental health offered by the National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health. Thanks to all who submitted workshop proposals. We will keep you posted on the decision-making process as it moves forward.

Center for Health Care Strategies releases new report - Faces of Medicaid Data Analysis
Network faithful take note - The Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) has just released the issue brief and full report for Faces of Medicaid Data Analysis: Identifying Opportunities to Improve Children's Behavioral Health. The Center plans to disseminate their subsequent analyses of 2008 data on children's behavioral health use and expense in Medicaid in mid-2014. We will keep you posted!

New System of Care Planning and Implementation Grants
New System of Care Planning and Implementation Grants are being made available to public entities to advance efforts to expand and sustain the system of care approach for children and youth with serious mental health challenges and their families. Planning grants have a due date of March 19, 2014; Implementation Grants have a deadline of March 21, 2014.  Based on available appropriations, it is estimated that SAMHSA will fund 14 new Planning Grants and 23 new Implementation Grants. Get the details now!

During meetings I can't stand it when...
Pathways to Positive Futures has two new tip sheets designed to help increase youth participation in team meetings. The tip sheets are colorful and engaging, and based on the work of youth advisors. One is aimed at youth-- it's called "During meetings I cant stand it when..." and makes suggestions about what young people can do to help their teams avoid making meetings uncomfortable for them. The other tip sheet focuses on what team facilitators can do to help teams avoid creating situations that young people most dislike. Plus, they also have… aw heck, just go to their website. They've got more good stuff than any one person could carry… Do the elves at Pathways ever rest?

Vote for your favorite meme! Mental Health Meme contest deadline extended until Dec 22nd!
Well, obviously the elves at Pathways do not rest cuz you still have two days to vote for your favorite mental health meme. People of all ages can vote for their favorite mental health meme that demonstrates how young people manage their mental health. The strengths-based memes from 18-30 year olds with the most likes will win 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Winners' memes will appear in the next issue of Focal Point! 

LGBT and the ACA
Interesting Washington Post article discusses the challenge faced by LGBT Americans and health insurance. It turns out that a disproportionate number of LGBT Americans are uninsured and qualify for federal premium subsidies to help buy coverage. The Obama administration is ramping up efforts to increase awareness so that more LGBT Americans get enrolled before the end of the year. Some of the reasons for this disparity include such things as same-sex partners not qualifying as family members for employer-based insurance plans or being fired because of sexual orientation or gender identity. Be sure to check out the infographic!

A bold plan to address health disparities 
Check out another in a series of articles in Forbes from Rob Waters of Prevention Institute - The article focuses on the St. John's Well Child and Family Center, a network of 10 community clinics in south Los Angeles, and its work creating and implementing a wellness trust. Interesting strategy for Network faithful who are rolling up their sleeves and working in their local community.

NCHS releases health insurance coverage report
The National Center for Health Statistics just released updated and expanded data on health insurance coverage. The report, Health Insurance Coverage: Estimates from the National Health Interview Survey, January – June 2013 includes estimates by state Medicaid expansion status and estimates by state Health Insurance Marketplace type as of October 31, 2013.  Children 0–17 years of age and adults 18–64 years of age in states adopting Medicaid expansion were less likely to be uninsured than children and adults in states not moving forward with the expansion. Also, adults aged 18–64 in states moving forward with Medicaid expansion were more likely to have public coverage than adults in states not moving forward with expansion.

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Is Friday Update workin' for ya?

A big THANK YOU for reading and participating in Friday Update each and every week. Our promise to you is that we will work to improve and expand our coverage of pertinent issues for children's mental health advocates, families, policy makers and just plain folk who care about making our communities stronger. So in the spirit of innovation and change what would you do to improve Friday Update for 2013? Send us your ideas. We are grateful for any and all feedback especially for ideas of how we can improve upon what we offer you. Not signed up yet to receive Friday Update every week? Sign up now and get the latest information you need to help you improve services for children and families. Forward a copy of this Update to a colleague and be a part of spreading the love about children's mental health far and wide. Just be sure to give us a wee bit of credit, okay? 

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Let us know what you need from the Network!   

We love feedback so let us know how we can improve the website to better meet your needs. Contact us here. We run this operation on your donations. If you find Friday Update useful and the resources we alert you to on our website useful, take one minute to keep us going for another year with your tax-deductible donation. Thanks again to so many of you who are spreading the word. We are indeed a collective voice and your support is greatly appreciated.

Scott Bryant-Comstock
President & CEO 
http://cmhnetwork.org

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