Friday Update 3-28-14

Greetings faithful readers. With only a few days left to sign up for health care, we need to celebrate passing the 6 million mark. But don't rest - still time to "keep on walkin'" - Why, that makes me think of the amazing Edwin Starr and his megahit "25 miles." Okay, you know what to do. Follow the lead of Network faithful at Sesame Workshop in New York and call a halt to work, turn the speakers up as far as they will go and get your dance on! And then get to readin' Friday Update! 

Most important reads for this week

Heads up - Look for a special Monday issue to cover the following four important items:


6 million and counting! 
As this historic open enrollment period enters its final days, more than 6 million Americans have signed up for coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplaces since October 1, thanks to the Affordable Care Act. Those looking to get covered before the March 31st deadline still have time! 

Presentations from the 27th Annual Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference are now online!
The conference presentations are now available online in PDF format. Please note that the only sessions available are those for which the presenters granted permission to post on the website. Come and get 'em!

USF to offer new Master of Science (MS) Degree in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health 
Speaking of USF they continue to lead the way in preparing a knowledgeable work force in children's mental health services. Just announced is their new Master of Science (MS) degree in Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health. The degree prepares professionals to serve in public and non-profit agencies and schools that work with diverse children and adolescents experiencing behavioral health challenges and their families. 

Father Greg Boyle featured at the Georgetown Training Institutes 
Father Gregory Boyle is the founder and Executive Director of Homeboy Industries, the largest gang intervention, rehabilitation, and re-entry program in the United States, now in its 25th year. A native Angeleno, Father Greg was ordained a Jesuit priest in 1984. He was transformed by his work in Bolivia, Mexico, and Folsom Prison with those who "live at the margins."  His dedication to finding a place for all in our society brought him to the Boyle Heights community of East Los Angeles, where he served as pastor of Dolores Mission Church, then the poorest parish in the city, from 1986 through 1992. It was there that Father Greg started what would become Homeboy Industries, a nonprofit organization that employs and trains more than 300 former gang-members every year in seven social enterprises, from Homeboy Silkscreen & Embroidery to Homeboy Bakery and Homegirl Café. Now located in Downtown Los Angeles, Homeboy also provides a path to change and free, critical services to the 12,000 people who walk through the doors every year seeking a better life.
 You can hear his story in person by registering for the Georgetown University Training Institutes taking place in Washington, DC July 16 – 20 in Washington, DC. Check out the incredible lineup of speakers by visiting the Training Institute website. It's gonna be a good one. See you in July! 

SAMHSA announces children's mental health awareness day plans 
May 8, 2014 is SAMHSA's National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day (Awareness Day). Activities will be held in over 1100 communities across the country. Check out all the details and get ready for a great time. 

National Federation holding poster contest for Awareness Week 
The National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health has announced their plans for Children's Mental Health Awareness Week in May. Using the theme "Building Circles of Wellness", the Federation is holding a poster contest to help raise awareness for children's mental health and reduce the stigma associated with it. The contest is geared toward children and youth up to age 21. To make things even more fun, cash prizes will be provided to winning posters! 

Webinar: Becoming a Medicaid Provider of Family and Youth Peer Support 
Many states are moving to make family support a Medicaid billable service through a waiver or State Plan Amendment (SPA).  Stepping into the role of a Medicaid provider is a major decision for a family-run organization as it has implications for administration, finances, and service delivery. Join a distinguished panel of presenters for a discussion of the many factors that family-run organizations need to consider when becoming a Medicaid provider. This webinar is presented by the TA Network in partnership with the Family Run Executive Director Leadership Association (FREDLA) and the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) and is based on the new CHCS publication titled, Becoming a Medicaid Provider: Consideration for Family Run Organizations (2014). Looks like a good one folks. 

$200 stipends offered to youth organizers of Text, Talk, Act to Improve Mental Health 
Hey Network faithful, an important reminder from the good folks at Creating Community Solutions. Text, Talk, Act is back, and they are announcing an exciting opportunity for youth. Creating Community Solutions is offering $200 stipends to 10 youth organizersaround the country to be organizers for Text, Talk, Act.  Do you know a young person aged 16 - 26 who cares about the issue of mental health and has what it takes to bring others together on April 24th to Text, Talk, Act? If so, please get them to apply. Deadline is Monday. Okay Network faithful, you have the weekend to get your applications in. It's easy to do so get on it! 

Reviewing the definition of Seriously Emotionally Disturbed - a listening session with SAMHSA 
Network faithful take note - If you want to be part of the national discussion to review the current definition of "Seriously Emotionally Disturbed" then you will want to pay attention to this announcement from SAMHSA. A webinar will be held on Monday, March 31, 2014 2:30 pm Eastern Daylight Time to begin this discussion. Monday is gonna be a busy day! 

Webinar: Costs and cost-effectiveness in Wraparound programs 
The National Wraparound Initiative is out with another great webinar that will further solidify the importance of a wraparound approach. Check it out Network faithful! 

CDC estimates 1 in 68 children has been identified with autism spectrum disorder 
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1 in 68 children (or 14.7 per 1,000 eight-year-olds) in multiple communities in the United States has been identified with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This new estimate is roughly 30 percent higher than previous estimates reported in 2012 of 1 in 88 children (11.3 per 1,000 eight year olds) being identified with an autism spectrum disorder. 

April is Minority Health Month! 
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Office of Minority Health invites you to attend a webinar in honor of Minority Health Month. Speakers will discuss CMS' ongoing efforts to reduce and eliminate health disparities, and our work encouraging newly insured consumers to use preventive services and primary care. 

Covering Health Issues: A Sourcebook for Journalists 
The Alliance for Health Reform has a wonderful guide for journalists to help them understand key health policy topics. We think it will be helpful for everyone! 

Health Care Innovations Exchange focus on at-risk families of newborns 
Network faithful should take note of the recent issue of the Exchange from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The featured Innovations describe three programs that provided personalized support and education for low-income or at-risk families of newborns. The programs include one that performed in-home risk assessments; another that provided home visits to low-income, first-time mothers to improve pregnancy outcomes and children's health; and a third that offered women and their families services appropriate for each stage of the childbearing cycle: pregnancy, postpartum, early childhood, and between pregnancies. 


Take Action! Please take time to familiarize yourselves with these bills and share your thoughts with your elected officials.


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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 2014? 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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Scott Bryant-Comstock
President & CEO 

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