Friday Update

CMHNetwork Friday Update 9-11-20

September 11, 2020

Greetings, faithful readers. Let’s start by celebrating invention, and maybe a bit of reinvention. I, like many, am finding ways to reinvent myself during this time of Pandemic. For me, it is embarking on a new journey with the Optimistic Advocate podcast. How are you looking to reinvent yourself? You may be fine right where you are but go for it if you’ve got the itch. Doesn’t matter how old you are, your station in life, and most definitely, what other people think – now, more than ever, in a strange way I haven’t quite figured out yet, is a time to scratch that creative itch. Doesn’t have to require money or additional resources, which are in such short supply for so many of us. It just requires reflection and commitment to look at the world just a bit differently. So, with that, embrace some reinvention with the Wintergatan Marble Machine. The possibilities are endless! Enjoy the marbles (ya gotta watch the video to get the reference), and then get to readin’ Friday Update, cuz we got work to do!

Most Important Reads of the Week

Yes, an Online Master’s is Possible!
Attend a virtual session to find out more about the USF Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Master’s Program
The Children’s Mental Health Network has had great success working with students in the CABH Program at USF. The field needs many qualified professionals to serve in community, youth, and family agencies and organizations that promote the well-being of children, adolescents, and emerging adults. Learn more during a Virtual Information Session September 16th about the fully online master’s program in Child & Adolescent Behavioral HealthRegister here.

Reflections on the Joker’s Popularity and What America Can Learn From Gotham City’s Mental Health System: An Interview With Micah Howe
In the latest episode of The Optimistic Advocate, I had the honor of engaging in conversation with Micah Howe, a dedicated mental health advocate from rural Iowa. Micah candidly shared his journey through mental health treatment and support, and his evolution as an advocate. Micah was scheduled to speak at the 33rd Annual Research and Policy Conference, back in March 2020. COVID-19 put a halt to the conference, but I knew I wanted to have the opportunity to speak with him. Micah provides some great tips for those with mental illness, their families, and loved ones. Micah is a strong advocate and a rising voice for those with lived experience. Enjoy the interview! 

Addressing FFPSA Requirements: Tools for Selection and Sustainable Implementation of Evidence-Supported Programs Webinar
Monday, September 21st, 2020
10:00am – 11:00 am PT
This two-part webinar series from the Child and Family Evidence-Based Practice Consortium will support organizations and systems in selecting, installing, and implementing evidence-supported programs. This first webinar will examine the key factors in program selection and implementation as presenters review a support tool developed by the Consortium to focus on these criteria. The second webinar will examine how to apply the tool in more depth and provide examples of its use.

Families Doubling Up During COVID
High unemployment rates during the pandemic and economic uncertainty have led many families to “double-up”—when multiple families or multiple generations share a home. Post-doctoral associate at Cornell University and sociologist, Hope Harvey, PhD, says that while doubling up can have benefits, there are many risks and challenges to this living arrangement during a pandemic.

COVID-19 Resources for People With Disabilities, Families, and Service Providers
The Arc, a national advocacy organization for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), their families, have put together a great resource page of information families need during the Pandemic. While not all of the information on this page is about children’s mental health, they do have a lot of information on legislation, taxes, paid work leave, social security, etc. that can have significant impact on families of children with mental health needs.

The Behavioral Health System and Its Response to COVID–19: A Snapshot Perspective
Although this paper was written back in April of 2020 when COVID-19 was at its peak, it provides insight into what different Behavioral Health facilities are doing in response to COVID-19. Pay close attention to the subsection “Residential Treatment Services” and how the authors state “most had no or limited prior experience or training in infection control or quarantine, and there have been challenges in accessing PPE and virus testing compared to hospitals and nursing homes.” Why have residential care facilities had such a hard time responding to COVID-19, when other healthcare facilities seem to be having an easier time adapting to a new normal? Other sections of this paper describe what other sectors are doing, such as juvenile justice, community service teams, psychiatric units, and crisis services.

Coping with Stress
September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has created a new webpage for coping with stress in the difficult times resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Suicide Prevention Strategic Plan
Recently, the CDC announced both a new Suicide Prevention Strategic Plan and the agency’s first programmatic funding to prevent suicide. The Nation Center for Injury Prevention and Control is directing $35 million in total over five years to the CDC-RFA-CE20-2001 cooperative agreement to implement and evaluate a comprehensive public health approach to suicide prevention, with attention to populations at higher risk.

10th National Leadership Academy for the Public’s Health (NLAPH) cohort – Apply Now!
The Center for Health Leadership and Practice (CHLP), a program of the Public Health Institute, is currently seeking applications from multi-sector teams across the United States for the 10th National Leadership Academy for the Public’s Health (NLAPH) cohort. Since 2012, NLAPH has brought together teams of leaders from diverse sectors, including health, housing, education, transportation, and law enforcement, to build their capacity to transform their communities, improve health, and advance equity. Read the flyer for more information and visit the CHLP website to apply. The deadline to apply is Friday, October 2nd.

Trauma and Addictions: What is the Connection and How do We Treat it?
In recognition of National Recovery Month, on September 24th, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm., the University of South Florida is offering a free webinar that will explore the intersection of addictions with racial trauma, individual trauma, and collective trauma. The webinar will be led by the Rehabilitation and Mental Health Program, which is part of Child and Family Studies, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences, so you know it is gonna be good!

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About the Author

Scott Bryant-Comstock

My passion is helping to shape policy and practice in children’s mental health. For the past 40 years, my journey as a mental health advocate has traveled from volunteering at a suicide and crisis center, professional roles as a therapist in an outpatient clinic, in-home family therapist, state mental health official, Board Chair for a county mental health program, and national reviewer of children’s mental health systems reform efforts. As the founder of the Children’s Mental Health Network (2009), I lead the Network’s efforts to grow a national online forum for the exchange of ideas on how to continually improve children’s mental health research, policy and practice.

In addition to my role with the CMHNetwork, I host The Optimistic Advocate Podcast, a weekly interview show where I explore how innovative people find ways to improve mental health for themselves, others, and the community at-large.

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