Friday Update 1-17-14

January 17, 2014


Friday Update 1-17-14

Greetings faithful readers. The spending bill cleared Congress last night and the President is expected to sign it before midnight on Saturday. In the grand scheme of things mental health services funding did pretty darned good. So let’s start with a “feel good” video to get you in the mood for a content-rich Friday Update. The 1000 Miles of Luca is a touching video documentary of a father celebrating his son who has Downs Syndrome. The message in the video is one that applies to all of us. So take 9 minutes to watch the video, grab a hankie, dab your eyes and then get to readin’ Friday Update!

Most important reads for this week

Potentially good news for the Healthy Transitions Initiative
As Network faithful know, we have been leading the charge for the House and Senate to pay closer attention to the needs of young adults with emotional challenges as they have worked tirelessly to craft a challenging omnibus spending bill. Our specific area of focus was around the Healthy Transitions Initiative (HTI). Countless Network faithful sent letters of support; stories about the benefits of services and supports for young adults and first-person accounts of how approaches like those found in the Healthy Transitions Initiative had made a significant difference in their lives.  Network faithful efforts appear to have had an impact as we have potentially really good news on this front. It appears that the Healthy Transitions Initiative has made it back in to the budget at the 20 million dollar level. Please remember that nothing is certain until the ink from the President’s pen dries after he signs off – likely by tomorrow at midnight. But for now, the collective voice of the Children’s Mental Health Network should give a hearty pat on each others back for your commitment to speaking out. We are especially appreciative of the young people from across the country that sent in heartfelt messages of support. Regardless of what happens with this bill, the challenge given to you remains the same – we need to step up our education about the vibrancy, brilliance, complex and affirming nature of youth in transition. We have much to be proud or regarding this next generation of leaders. It is our responsibility to ensure that they have what they need to make the next step into healthy adulthood.

Register today for the 27th Annual Children’s Mental Health Research & Policy Conference   
Okay, the Polar Vortex is tucked away up North but it’s still cold in many parts of the country… that is… except Tampa, Florida – where the 27th Annual Children’s Mental Health Research & Policy Conference awaits. I’m heading to the drug store to stock up on zinc oxide right now! Make your hotel reservations as soon a possible as the room block is expected to fill up early this year; and be sure to complete and pay your conference registration before the cut-off date to receive the early bird discount. Looking forward to seeing you at the conference in Tampa, Florida March 2 – 5, 2014. 

Georgetown Training Institutes – are you ready?  
Speaking of conferences, don’t make vacation plans for July, unless of course, those vacation plans include attending the Georgetown Training Institutes July 16 – 20, 2014 in lovely Washington DC. Registration opens soon!

Family Law Institute for judges and lawyers
This one is for all of our Network faithful who are lawyers and judges. We know that you have a most difficult job and are thrilled to make you aware of an upcoming Institute designed just for you. The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges is pleased to offer the Family Law Institute for Judges and Lawyers, scheduled March 2-5, 2014 in Monterey, Calif. Check it out. It looks like a winner.

ACF announces online toolkit to address domestic violence
The Administration for Children and Families’ (ACF) National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence health team has launched an online toolkit for healthcare providers and domestic violence advocates to learn more about how to help women be healthy and safe. Check it out Network faithful – tools you can use!

GAINS Center evidence-based practice webinar: Forensic Assertive Community Treatment
To complement the Forensic Assertive Community Treatment (FACT): Updating the Evidence brief, the GAINS Center will hold a webinar on the brief. Authors will share their knowledge on what the research says and how to apply FACT in real world settings. Mark your calendar for January 21, 3-4:30 pm.

Webinar: Isolation practices with vulnerable populations 
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) in collaboration with the National Center for Youth in Custody is offering a webinar on improving conditions of confinement for vulnerable populations. While isolation is harmful and traumatic for any youth, it can be particularly traumatic for youth with disabilities and for youth who have experienced physical, sexual, or other forms of abuse. This webinar will look at the impact of isolation practices on these vulnerable populations and identify appropriate alternatives being implemented in several jurisdictions. Important topic that many Network faithful have requested.

Timely information for peer providers from the Center for Integrated Health Solutions
The Center for Integrated Health Solutions (CIHS) website has launched a new Peer Providers webpage, which includes billing resources, sample job descriptions, the Whole Health Action Management (WHAM) training and participant guide (now available in Spanish), and the latest research on the effectiveness of peer providers.

Telebehavioral Health online training and technical assistance
The SAMHSA-Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Center for Integrated Health Solutions (CIHS) Telebehavioral Health Training and Technical Assistance Series is designed to help safety net providers and rural health clinics understand and adopt telebehavioral health services. The implementation of telehealth services for mental health and substance use allows for increased access to these services, particularly in rural or underserved areas. Divided into six sessions, the training provides tools and resources necessary to identify and implement a telebehavioral health program.

AAP hosting webinar on coaching families in the medical home
The American Academy of Pediatrics is hosting a webinar that may be of great interest to Network faithful. If you are interested in learning about strategies for coaching families and modeling positive parenting in the Medical Home, be sure to put this one down on your calendar.

New recommendations from the RWJF Commission to Build a Healthier America
In 2008, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) convened the Commission to Build a Healthier America to help us find better ways to improve the health of our nation. The Commission—a national, nonpartisan group of leaders from both the public and private sectors—issued 10 sweeping recommendations aimed at improving the health of all Americans. The Commission’s work sparked a national conversation that has led to a marked increase in collaboration among a wide variety of partners aimed at addressing the many determinants of health. Eager to build upon this progress, RWJF asked the Commissioners to come together again. This year, the Commission tackled immensely complex matters that underlie profound differences in the health of Americans: experiences in early childhood; opportunities that communities provide for people to make healthy choices; and the mission and incentives of health professionals and health care institutions.

2014 Youth in Custody Certificate Program accepting applications
The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform (CJJR) at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy is pleased to announce that the application window for the 2014 Youth in Custody Certificate Program is open now through February 28, 2014. This program shines a brighter light on the serious, high-risk juvenile offender population, and helps leaders begin or accelerate systemic change to improve outcomes for youth in custody. The target audience for the Youth in Custody Certificate Program is public and private sector leaders working in the juvenile justice, child welfare, mental health, substance abuse, education and other related systems of care that serve youth in the custody of the juvenile justice system.

Boston is looking pretty darned good – Hot job tip!
Community Catalyst is looking for three dynamic people to join their growing team working to improve access to and quality of services for prevention, treatment and recovery from drug and alcohol misuse and addiction. They offer exciting, meaningful work, competitive pay and robust benefits. All three positions are based in Boston but have a national focus.

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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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