Friday Update

Friday Update 9-20-13

September 21, 2013


Friday Update 9-20-13

Greetings faithful readers. Another mind numbing week of political posturing about the budget, Obamacare, and a terrible tragedy at the Navy Yard facility in Washington, DC. We will be sharing our thoughts about the various “calls for action” to this tragedy in our Morning Zen post next Friday. Sometimes it is best to reflect before responding. This is one of those times. In other Network developments we are now at day 35 with no response to our request for information on why the Healthy Transitions Initiative was removed from the Senate Appropriations Bill (S. 1284) for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014. Read Morning Zen for an update on our plan of action beginning next week. Finally, in our never-ending quest to get Democrats and Republicans actually talking to each other in the spirit of compromise, we dug into the vault and resurrected a video we shared with Network faithful last year. We know that something has got to get them talkin’ so we will keep tryin’. Watch the video, prepare for the government shutdown and then get to readin’ Friday Update.

Most important reads for this week

Get ready for a shutdown…
With a likely shutdown of federal government at the end of the month, the Office of Management and Budget issued a memo on Wednesday detailing how federal agencies should proceed. Good information for grantees in the memo.

Call to Action – Healthy Transitions Initiative – Day 35 – still no answer
Thirty-five days have passed since we sent our letter to Senator Harkin inquiring about what happened to the funding for the Healthy Transitions Initiative that was included in the President’s budget but disappeared with no explanation when the Senate Appropriations Committee released their version of the budget. Thirty-five days and no response to our inquiry. Interestingly, several Network faithful have made inquiries with their Senators but so far not a word has come back about what happened. As we said in last week’s Friday Update, “ain’t nuthin’ like a good mystery.” No worries Network faithful, we will not let this issue drop. Beginning on Monday of next week we will send a letter a day to each member of the Appropriations Committee until we get an answer. This issue is too important to walk away from.

Train a Trevor Lifeguard
Are you an educator, school counselor, school nurse or youth group leader? Bring suicide prevention education to your school or group and help the Trevor Foundation reach their goal of training 5,000 new Trevor Lifeguards.

Keep All Students Safe Act
Thanks to Network faithful who have contacted their representatives to encourage them to support the Keep All Students Safe Act. This legislative proposal would prohibit the use of seclusion in locked and unattended rooms or enclosures, prohibit the use of mechanical and chemical restraints and physical restraints that restrict breathing, and prohibit aversive behavioral interventions that compromise health and safety. These prohibitions are needed because there is great variability from state to state regarding the prohibition of these dangerous activities in schools. Keep speaking out folks. A constant drum beat is needed on this one.

Dr. Thomas Bornemann presenting at the Children’s Mental Health Research & Policy Conference
Dr. Thomas Bornemann has been confirmed as the Monday afternoon speaker for the 27th Annual Children’s Mental Health Research & Policy Conference on Monday, March 3rd, 2014. Dr. Bornemann’s presentation will profile the work of the Carter Center, with a special focus on important issues facing children’s mental health policy. Dr. Bornemann joins Dr. David Satcher, who will be presenting earlier in the day, for what will be a content rich and inspiring opening for the 27th Annual Children’s Mental Health Research & Policy Conference. Okay Network faithful, get your proposals in so you can be a part of this amazing annual event!

Become a Certified Application Counselor
Interested in helping with health insurance marketplace applications? It is not too late to become a Certified Application Counselor.

Mental Health & Substance Abuse Treatment Providers – Getting Ready for the Health Insurance Marketplace Toolkit 
SAMHSA has created an online toolkit to help Mental Health & Substance Abuse Treatment Provider organizations prepare for open enrollment. This toolkit explains the health care law and how it helps people with mental and substance use disorders; outlines how to use the Health Insurance Marketplace; and provides a wealth of communications ideas and materials with a focus on getting the word out to uninsured individuals in your communities.

William T. Grant Foundation – Distinguished Fellows Program
William T. Grant Foundation’s Distinguished Fellows Program is designed to increase the supply of, demand for, and use of high-quality research in the service of improved youth outcomes. To accomplish this goal, the program gives influential mid-career researchers the opportunity to immerse themselves in practice or policy settings, and gives influential practitioners and policy makers the opportunity to work in research settings. The program encourages mid-career researchers to submit proposals that are designed to deepen their understanding of policy processes and practice settings. The program also invites policy makers and practitioners to propose projects that will enhance their capacities to recognize and use high-quality research. Another great opportunity for research and policy Network faithful. This one is too good to pass up.

The Wellness Discussion Guide and Family Health Plan: Tools to reduce toxic stress risks through a two-generation approach in the Family-Centered Medical Home
For those interested in how to make a Family-centered Medical Home work amazingly well, don’t miss this important Morning Zen post by Martha Kaufman, Project Director of Project Launch in Alamance, North Carolina. Families with multiple and inter-related health risk factors need active comprehensive assistance to promote total family wellness, including integrated behavioral health professionals, paraprofessional health navigators/coaches and a structured wellness assessment and plan. The work she and her team are doing to develop strategies for serving families in the new age of health reform is quite impressive.

Sesame Workshop Talk, Listen, Connect series focuses on military families
Sesame Workshop has done it again with another top quality product in their Talk, Listen, Connect Toolkit for Military Families. Did you know that nearly 800,000 preschoolers are separated from a parent serving in the U.S. military? For these children and their families, Sesame Street provides much-needed support and practical education with Talk, Listen, Connect, a multiphase outreach initiative to help kids through deployments, combat-related injuries, and the death of a loved one. Hot tip: If you are planning on attending the National Federation conference this November you can see a presentation by Sesame Workshop where they will unveil their new Resilience Initiative.

The ART Model for Increasing Engagement in Systems of Care: A 3-Step Brain-Based Model for Helping People Move from ‘Resistant’ to ‘Engaged’
The research in leadership and organizational change management demonstrates that our biggest obstacle to moving past the status quo in child and family-serving systems of care is engagement. A recent 2013 poll by Gallup demonstrated how disengaged American workers really are. It showed that 70% of employees in America are disengaged. Read Laurie Ellington’s Morning Zen post and learn how to get staff in your organization performing at their peak and achieve peak and optimal outcomes.

Watch and Share New Spanish Cartoon: “Los YouToons Se Preparan Para Obamacare”
Before the Oct. 1 start of open enrollment, the Kaiser Family Foundation presents a Spanish-language video as part of its continuing efforts to increase the public’s understanding of upcoming changes under the Affordable Care Act. Based on the previously released English-language video, “Los YouToons Se Preparan Para Obamacare” explains the basic changes in how Americans can obtain health coverage in 2014. Well done Kaiser!

Don’t be a victim of consumer fraud in the health care marketplace
Great tips on how to keep you from being taken advantage of by fraudulent navigator posers.

Visualizing health policy: Premium subsidy scenarios under Obamacare
This month’s Visualizing Health Policy infographic shows 3 scenarios that illustrate the cost of health insurance under the Affordable Care Act for families in different circumstances, both before and after premium subsidies (in the form of a tax credit).

Apply for access to confidential SAMHSA data
Network faithful researchers take note: You can now apply for remote access to National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) and Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) confidential data for research purposes. Qualified research organizations may submit proposed research projects through the application process between September 16 and October 18, 2013. Get on it!


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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 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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Scott Bryant-Comstock
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