Friday Update

Friday Update 5-27-16

May 22, 2016


Friday Update 5-27-16

Greetings faithful readers. One of our faithful readers in Hong Kong sent us a special request to feature Donnie Trumpet & the Social Experiment, so how could we say no? Grab yourself a mug of Bubble tea, enjoy the video, and then get to readin’ Friday Update, cuz we got work to do!

Most important reads for this week

It’s Time for Mental Health Advocates to Take Back Assisted Outpatient Treatment From Misguided Politicians 
For several years, the Children’s Mental Health Network has called for advocates on both sides of the AOT debate to come together to find ways to meet the needs of individuals with serious mental illness. With the recent announcement by SAMHSA of the Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) Grant Program, advocates on both sides of the AOT debate have an important opportunity to work together to design an AOT process that incorporates the full breadth of community involvement. I know this may seem difficult for anti-AOT advocates, but now is the time to get involved in the design and delivery of these pilot projects. Leaving it up to politicians to define what AOT is will result in more of what we are currently seeing – a gross lack of understanding of the importance of the recovery community in treating and supporting individuals with serious mental illness. 

A Personal Account: Mental Health Awareness, Peer Support, and Vicarious Traumatization 
Morning Zen guest blogger, Sergeant Christoper Scallon, shares his experience as a trauma survivor of a deadly force encounter and reminds us of the importance of peer support. “My humble suggestion is that we become students of our craft and never stop looking for the help that we will inevitably need. As a peer support unit director, the degree of help we provide is met with an equal responsibility to care for ourselves. To help others, we must recognize the need to help ourselves first.”

International Bipolar Foundation Receives 2016 Change Maker Award 
Congratulations to Muffy Walker, founder of the International Bipolar Foundation, for winning the 2016 Organization Change Maker Award! Each year, the Child Mind Institute honors advocacy organizations and individuals who are making a difference in our shared quest for improved services and supports for people experiencing mental health challenges. We can’t think of a better organization to receive this honor! 

What’s Good for Mental Health is Good for the Economy 
For those of you who are actively speaking with your congressional representatives about the various mental health bills under discussion in the coming weeks, you might want to share this post from SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services Director Paolo del Vecchio. In the post, del Vecchio shares research about the costs of mental illness on the global economy that were released at a recent World Bank Group and World Health Organization meeting of international leaders. There is growing recognition that providing necessary treatment and services to people with mental illness brings a significant return on investment. Nothing like financials to support the understanding of the importance of prevention and peer support to get a politicians attention! 

Call for Abstracts: Integrating Evidence-Based Practice and Implementation Science in Academic and Field Curricula 
For this special issue of the Journal of Social Work Education, the editors are inviting proposals for manuscripts that will focus on how to integrate evidence-based practice and implementation science into academic and field curricula. This special issue will advance the discourse beyond previous debate about the nature and appropriateness of evidence-based practice. Proposal abstracts of no more than 500 words should be submitted by July 31, 2016.  

More Young Children with ADHD Could Benefit from Behavior Therapy
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest Vital Signs report urges healthcare providers to refer parents of young children with ADHD for training in behavior therapy before prescribing medicine to treat the disorder.

SAMHSA Suicide Safe App Wins FedHealthIT Innovation Award 
Suicide Safe is a new, free mobile app that helps providers integrate suicide prevention strategies into their practice and address suicide risk among their patients.

National AI/AN Behavioral Health Conference 
The National AI/AN Behavioral Health Conference will be held on August 9 – 11, 2016, at the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront Hotel in Portland, Oregon. The theme is “Creating Trauma Informed Systems in AI/AN Communities. ” The National AI/AN Behavioral Health Conference is the nation’s premier opportunity to assemble and hear from nationally recognized speakers, behavioral health care providers, Tribal leaders, and health care officials committed to addressing emergent behavioral health topics in Indian Country. The conference attracts presenters and participants from across the country who want to share their research and promising practices while providing opportunities for professional development, collaboration, and networking. Check it out!

Upcoming Webinar: How Can We Learn About the Effectiveness of Transition Programs for Youth and Young Adults? 
National Outcomes Measures (NOMs) about the Healthy Transitions Initiative (HTI) may provide some answers. This webinar will report on NOMs data gathered from seven HTI grantees, 19 local communities, and over 1500 young people (ages 16-25). The analysis will explore change in terms of social connectedness, mental health symptoms, and daily functioning. Limitations of the data and their effect on interpretation of the results will also be discussed.


  • NIMH Children’s Mental Health Web Portal 
    Children and teens can develop the same mental health disorders and conditions as adults, but their symptoms may be different or hard to identify. Learn more about child and adolescent mental health by visiting NIMH’s new web portal.
  • Preventing Bullying Through Science, Policy, and Practice
    Preventing Bullying Through Science, Policy, and Practice evaluates the state of the science on biological and psychosocial consequences of bullying as well as the context, scope, and impact of the problem. The report also outlines next steps in prevention for policymakers, parents, educators, healthcare providers, and others concerned with the care of children.

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scottScott Bryant-Comstock
President & CEO

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