Utilizing funds recovered by the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, in a settlement of a lawsuit against the pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson, the AGO was pleased to announce the Increasing Access to and Measuring the Benefits of Providing Behavioral Health Services in Massachusetts grant program “Behavioral Health Grant” opportunity.
The Behavioral Health Grant supports and evaluates new projects which improve the delivery of mental health and/or substance abuse services in Massachusetts in order to improve public health, welfare, and safety. The grant will support projects that can be used as models to (1) improve mental health and/or substance abuse services and (2) demonstrate societal benefits and measurable improvements in the areas of public health, welfare, and safety by reducing crime, violence, suicide, or homelessness, or by improving care for veterans, children, victims of violence, low-income populations, and other underserved populations who have difficulty obtaining or adhering to appropriate treatments and services.
Applications were requested from local, county, and/or statewide government bodies, non-profit organizations or law enforcement, public safety or criminal justice entities in Massachusetts.
The range of projects funded over a two-year period involve direct care, public awareness, training, screenings and referral. The following 22 organizations will receive grants to serve several communities throughout the Commonwealth:
- Alliance for Inclusion and Prevention: Placing clinicians in 18 Boston Public Schools offering services for students with anxiety, trauma-related disorders, disruptive disorders, and depression.
- Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC): The Youth Access to Support and Services (YASS) project will increase access to services youth victims of sexual violence ages 12-21 need to address immediate mental health symptoms, and prevent the development of long term mental health conditions.
Servicing: 90 towns and communities in Greater Boston, Lowell, the Merrimack Valley and Central Massachusetts
- Bay Cove Human Services: Providing support for the complex needs of homeless seniors in the form of an Adult Day Health program on the weekends, which will include transportation, shelter, counseling, recovery support groups, and information and referrals on healthcare, advocacy, and housing issues.
- Berkshire Medical Center (Berkshire Health Systems): The Telepsychiatry network will connect acute care providers and patients in the most rural sections of the region to the Behavioral Health Specialists at Berkshire Medical Center to help evaluate, stabilize and treat patients locally.
Servicing: Berkshire County
- Boston Health Care for the Homeless: Expanding behavioral health and substance abuse services to two homeless shelters in Boston: The Pine Street Inn and the New England Center for Homeless Veterans.
- Danvers Public Schools: A Licensed Psychologist will provide on-site counseling to staff and students. Four trainings will be held by Clinical Mental Health Experts for Danvers staff and community members (first responders, youth, and clergy), focusing on mental health topics and coping skills.
- Gosnold Inc. of Cape Cod: Telepsychiatry will provide mental health and substance abuse treatment to patients living in remote, underserved areas in Barnstable County through video conferencing. It connects patients, psychiatrists, physicians, and other healthcare professionals through the use of television cameras and microphones. The equipment will also be used to provide distance-learning opportunities in order to enhance staff development and improve the quality of care delivered.
Servicing: Cape Cod: Falmouth, Mashpee, Centerville, Orleans, Provincetown, Hyannis
- HomeBase Program: Educate and train first responders (police and fire), patient care (nurses and physicians assistants) and rehabilitation service professionals (OT, PT, and Speech Pathologists) to improve their understanding of and ability to intervene for impacted veterans and families.
- Institute for Health and Recovery: Provide behavioral health treatment, case management and resource coordination to individuals and families affected by poverty, homelessness or lack of housing stability, substance use, trauma and mental health issues to homeless families residing in motels.
Servicing: Danvers, Chelmsford, Haverhill, Methuen
- Judge Baker Children’s Center: Placing mental health clinicians in ten local elementary and middle schools to fill the gap in individual and family behavioral health services for children with undiagnosed and/or untreated mental health disorders using evidence-based treatments.
Servicing: Plymouth County: Plymouth, Rockland, Wareham
- Justice Resource Institute: Helping girls, boys, and transgender youth ages 12-17 who are victims, or at high-risk for commercial sexual exploitation, exit or avoid the sex industry. Mental health services will be delivered by both paraprofessional "Survivor Mentors" as well as trained mental health clinicians, which connect young people to needed services and develops their potential as they transition into young adulthood.
Servicing: Greater Boston: Boston, Brookline, Acton
- Lynn Community Health Center: Providing comprehensive behavioral health services to at-risk children and youth in three elementary schools (Kindergarten to Grade 5) and the Early Childhood Center (pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten), in partnership with the Lynn Public Schools. LCHC will work to help students with their psychological and emotional challenges, many of which get in the way of their ability to learn, to succeed in the classroom, and to graduate.
- Lynn Police Department: The Diversion Program will include a Clinical Coordinator and a Case Manger embedded with officers at the Lynn Police Department to provide assessment services, short term treatment, linkages and referrals to mental health and substance abuse services, and follow along supports to ensure adherence to services.
- Massachusetts Mental Health Center (DMH): A Smoking Cessation Care Management Program designed for patients with serious mental illness. This program utilizes an integrated, team-based service delivery model and leverages ongoing assessment, personalized motivational enhancement strategies, patient-centered decision support tools, and evidence-based treatments to identify, engage, and support patients.
- National Alliance on Mental Illness Massachusetts: Launching an anti-stigma campaign featuring hundreds of families from all walks of life, across Massachusetts, who will share their personal stories of mental illness on video. This will be a multi-media campaign harnessing the power of video, promoting discussion through social media and using the news media to herald the message.
- Riverside Community Care: The Transitional Community Support Program (TCSP) will use a mobile community based team to conduct a person-centered needs assessment and service planning process providing an array of services tailored to help clients engage in services that meet their needs. The TCSP will be flexible and support individuals who are unable to independently access and sustain involvement with needed services, ultimately helping them to sustain service relationships on their own.
Servicing: Norfolk County and Newton
- ServiceNet, Inc.: Providing mental health and substance abuse treatment for the homeless population in Berkshire, Franklin, and Hampshire counties by integrating clinical treatment with case management through a multi-disciplinary team of social workers, peer mentors, and nurses.
Servicing: Berkshire, Franklin, and Hampshire Counties
- Spectrum Health Systems: Recovery Support Navigators will work with opioid-addicted individuals pre- and post-release from the state prison system to facilitate treatment.
Servicing: Worcester County
- Stanley Street Treatment & Resource, Inc. (SSTAR): The District Attorney's Office will refer non-violent drug offenders and drug offenders with mental illness for immediate access to mental health and substance abuse services, a treatment plan, drug testing, and case management.
Servicing: New Bedford and Fall River
- The Sharewood Project: A free health care organization open to all ages offering quality health care services founded by a group of physicians and Tufts University medical students. This grant will provide outreach and free services to the homeless population.
Servicing: Greater Boston
- Tufts Medical Center: Providing an Autism Behavior Consultation (ABC) Program that utilizes an attenuated version of Multi-systemic Therapy (MST). Intensive treatment targeting the child, family, and community using a combination of evidence-based interventions and techniques, and collaborating with providers at schools and in mental health agencies where necessary.
- Whittier Street Health Center: Improving the delivery of mental health and substance abuse services to underserved populations in the Boston area by developing a Behavioral Health Urgent Care component within the existing Urgent Care Clinic, which will treat same-day behavioral health emergencies that do not require the emergency department.
Servicing: Roxbury, Dorchester, Hyde Park, Jamaica Plain, South End, Mattapan