Kennedy Forum Mental Health “Call to Action!” “Equity in Mental Health Care.”

PatKennedyRecap

Feb 09, 2015 by The Kennedy Forum On Tuesday, February 3, Patrick J. Kennedy and Dr. David Satcher announced the formation of the Kennedy Center for Mental Health Policy and Research, released new polling data on how Americans see the issue today, and issued a call to action. Learn more…

 

Kennedy Forum Mental Health “Call to Action” Webcast…  click on this attention getting video clip for an update on this most important initiative!

The Center will focus attention on a few key areas, including:

  • Quality, with a focus on provider accountability, outcomes, and the need to set clear and achievable standards that all providers can adopt and use.

  • Innovation, with a focus on cutting-edge technology, ongoing research, and leveraging the promise of big data.

  • Equity, with a redoubling of efforts to end disparities, fully implement parity, and support justice system reforms.

  • Integration, with an emphasis on caring for the whole person, and ensuring that all Americans can get a “checkup from the neck up.”

The announcement of the Center comes as 71% of Americans are calling for “significant “ or “radical” changes in the way mental health and addiction are treated. In addition, a majority of survey respondents highlighted two key areas of focus for reform: “Improving quality of care for people with mental health conditions” and “making sure people with mental health conditions have access to the care they need regardless of where they live, their ethnicity, or their background.”

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I am happy to share that we have our own “call to action” in the State of Oregon with the key legislative initiative, (click on this highlighted link) “Mental Health: Can’t we do better?”  At my local level, the Depoe Bay, Oregon City Council included mental health as a new business item in the agenda on February 3rd, which included input from the community and highly supportive discussion by the council.  As city councilor, I have been tasked to follow through with a grass roots local work group to start the conversation and begin developing ideas and solutions to improve access to mental health first aid and overall care.

Our first “grass roots” local work group meeting is scheduled for Monday February 16, 2014.  I am planning to keep the community posted on our progress in working with local, county, and state resources in meeting mental health care goals and spirit of a national “call to action.”  Teamwork and community collaboration are key to our success!

Steve Sparks, Author, Reconciliation: A Son’s Story and My Journey of Healing in Life After Trauma, Part 1…  Click the highlighted text for my author page…

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