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certified community behavioral health clinic

Clinics across the nation are now eligible to apply for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) Expansion Grants, under a funding opportunity announcement released this week by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

The National Council has long advocated for increased funding for the grant program. We also have been a forceful advocate for expansion of CCBHCs to all 50 states. Not only does the $200 million SAMHSA will make available this year represent a $50 million increase from 2019, the funding is now available to clinics nationwide – an important step toward expanding the CCBHC model across the country.

The CCBHC program supports clinics in expanding access to a comprehensive array of mental health and addiction services in community-based settings, while improving their ability to coordinate care with other health system partners and collect and report on quality metrics.

Clinics applying for Expansion Grants are eligible for two-year grants of up to $2 million per year. Organizations in all 50 states may apply for grants, though priority will be given to clinics in the 24 states that received CCBHC planning grants in 2016.

The National Council will host an informational call to provide more details about CCBHC status, training opportunities, and lessons learned from prior cohorts. Stay tuned for more details and registration information.

SAMHSA has established a March 10 deadline for grant applications. Read the official SAMHSA announcement for more information on the program requirements.

Our website includes more information on CCBHCs, which remain among the National Council’s highest priorities.

See our blog for more details.

(Message from Chuck Ingoglia, President and CEO, National Council for Behavioral Health)**

After much debate and political back and forth, the House and Senate today passed a short-term extension of the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) Medicaid demonstration program.

As was announced last week, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved legislation to extend the original eight CCBHC demonstration states through December 2021. The legislation passed the House by a vote of 371-46. Despite tremendous bipartisan support in the House, efforts to extend the original eight states and expand CCBHCs to two new states stalled in the Senate. To provide themselves more time, House and Senate members agreed to a two-week extension, continuing the program through the 4th of July recess.

While we cannot guarantee a path forward beyond this short-term extension, we have every reason to believe that upon its return Congress will pass another continuation of the program through the end of September 2019. As we have throughout this legislative process, the National Council will keep you informed and do its very best to make you aware of opportunities for action and advocacy at every turn.

Thank you all for your outstanding efforts these last few years. Through your hard work and advocacy you have expanded access to individuals in need, transformed how these services can and should be delivered in your communities and built a strong network of allies who believe in the promise of CCBHCs and have worked with us to support their continuation.

**NOTE: OMHSAS/DHS are in the process of confirming the full extent of this announcement and its impact on PA CCBHCs moving forward.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) has announced the selection of 16 locations to participate in the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) planning grant. The federal grant encourages states to adopt innovative approaches to community-based behavioral health services.

This initiative will further the Wolf Administration’s goal of improving the delivery of care for behavioral health and substance use treatment in the community where people live, providing Pennsylvanians with easier and more consistent access to the services they need. In an effort to provide CCBHC access to all affected Pennsylvanians, the 16 locations are comprised of both rural and urban locations throughout the state.

The federal Excellence in Mental Health Act established the CCBHCs as a way to improve quality and use evidenced-based practices in behavioral health.

The CCBHCs will provide nine core services:

  • Crisis services;
  • Targeted case management;
  • Outpatient mental health and substance abuse services;
  • Patient-centered treatment planning;
  • Screening, assessment, and diagnosis;
  • Psychiatric rehabilitation services;
  • Peer and family support;
  • Care for veterans and members of the military; and
  • Outpatient primary care screening and monitoring.

The following clinics were selected:

  • Berks Counseling Center, Berks
  • Cen Clear Child Services, Clearfield
  • Cen Clear Child Services, Jefferson
  • Cen Clear Child Services, Blair
  • Community Council Mental Health and Mental Retardation, Philadelphia
  • Community Counseling Center of Mercer County, Mercer
  • Community Guidance Center, Clearfield
  • Creative Health Services, Montgomery
  • Kidspeace, Monroe
  • NHS Delaware County, Delaware
  • Northeast Treatment Centers, Philadelphia
  • Pittsburgh Mercy, Allegheny
  • Public Health Management Corporation, Philadelphia
  • Resources for Human Development, Philadelphia
  • Safe Harbor, Erie
  • The Guidance Center, McKean

As part of being selected as a CCBHC, the CCBHC Assessment and Readiness Review webinar is taking place on Friday, April 8 at 9:00 am. You are welcome to join DHS in person in the Clothestree Conference Room. To join via webinar, please register using this link. Once registered, you will receive a confirmation email with your connection link. Please note, this link will be unique to you and should not be shared with others.

RCPA, through the National Council, will be offering support to all selected CCBHCs. In addition, all selected CCBHCs are welcome to attend a monthly nationwide call with National Council and state leaders. More information will be available later this week.

RCPA congratulates all selected CCBHC providers. Please contact Sarah Eyster for more information.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) has announced that they are extending the request for application deadline to Thursday, March 3, 2016, at 5:00 pm. Late last week, a glitch in the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) application was discovered. The Department of Human Services (DHS) fixed the issues and application information can now be entered in the correct fields. Due to this potentially causing a delay in completion of the application, DHS is extending the deadline. The application is available here.

Additional changes include that the required letters of support from the County Mental Health/Intellectual Disability Programs, and Single County Authorities, should be submitted directly to the CCBHC resource account. They should not be sent to the agency submitting the application.

DHS also invites you to attend the second CCBHC Steering Committee meeting. This meeting is taking place on Monday, February 29, 2016, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm at the Child Welfare Resource Center (403 East Winding Hill Road, Mechanicsburg). The first portion of the meeting will be devoted to providing an update and the remainder of the time will focus on the following CCBHC workgroups: Stakeholder Engagement, Data Collection and Reporting, Prospective Payment System, and CCBHC Certification.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) was recently awarded a planning grant that will assist in the creation of Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC). The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) grant will allow DHS to determine how CCBHCs fit into system redesign efforts, and support efforts to improve the behavioral health of Pennsylvanians by providing community-based mental health and substance use disorder treatment.

CCBHCs will serve adults with serious mental illnesses, children with severe emotional disturbances, and individuals with substance use disorders. The clinics will provide intensive, person-centered, multidisciplinary, evidence-based screen, assessment, diagnostics, treatment, prevention, and wellness services.

DHS invites you to attend one of the four regional CCBHC communication forums. This will be an open forum to gain input from our stakeholders and provide an opportunity to voice questions, comments, and concerns regarding the CCBHC process.

NORTHEAST REGION COMMUNICATION FORUM
Friday, February 12, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
OMHSAS Field Office, 100 Lackawanna Avenue, Scranton, PA 

CENTRAL REGION COMMUNICATION FORUM
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
County Commissioners Association of PA (CCAP), 2789 Old Post Road, Harrisburg, PA 

SOUTHEAST REGION COMMUNICATION FORUM
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
1:00–4:00 pm
Norristown State Hospital, Building 33, 1001 Sterigere Street, Norristown, PA 

WESTERN REGION COMMUNICATION FORUM
Friday, February 26, 2016
9:00 am–12:00 pm
Butler County Staff Development Center, 227 West Cunningham Street, Butler, PA

If you have not already done so, please email your RSVP with the following information: name, agency (if applicable), email address, and which forum you plan on attending.

Dr. Dale Adair held a pre-meeting with the steering committee on December 15, primarily focused on the letter of interest seeking information from eligible entities interested in applying to be a CCBHC, as well as the timeline of activities. Key activities include the request for letters of intent, due on Tuesday, January 5, 2016. On February 1, the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) will release the request for application, which will be due back by February 22. CCBHC selections will likely occur by the middle of March.

Dr. Adair recommitted to selecting a minimum of two CCBHCs (one urban, the other rural) as required by the act, but up to as many as twenty. Eligible providers include community mental health clinics and federally qualified health clinics. As DHS looks to make improvements to the quality of care that is offered to the individuals we serve, they would like a letter of interest containing the following:

  • Interest in becoming a CCBHC;
  • Indication of rural, urban, or suburban setting;
  • Willingness to complete the National Council Certified Clinic Readiness Tool;
  • Commitment to submit an application to become a CCBHC; and
  • Willingness to commit to participate in a CCBHC learning community.

Letters of interest must be submitted by 5:00 pm on Tuesday, January 5, 2016. Please submit responses electronically to Dr. Dale Adair, project director.

RCPA continues to support the use of the MTM and National Council readiness review tool. A full kickoff meeting of the CCBHC Steering Committee will be held at the end of January.

RCPA would like to congratulate the Department of Human Services Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) for being awarded a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) planning grant, for $886,200. The application process was led by Dr. Dale Adair, OMHSAS medical director.

Pennsylvania was one of 24 states awarded this one-year grant. Authorized under Section 223 of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, the planning grants are part of a comprehensive effort to integrate behavioral health with physical health care, utilize evidence-based practices on a more consistent basis, and improve access to high quality care. The planning grants will be used to support states to certify community behavioral health clinics, solicit input from stakeholders, establish prospective payment systems for demonstration reimbursable services, and prepare an application to participate in the demonstration program.

The criteria used to certify community behavioral health clinics emphasize high quality and evidence-based practices. Populations to be served are adults with serious mental illness, children with serious emotional disturbance, and those with long term and serious substance use disorders, as well as others with mental illness and substance use disorders.

The planning grants are the first phase of a two-phase process. When the planning grant phase ends in October 2016, awardees will have an opportunity to apply to participate in a two-year demonstration program that will begin in January 2017. Under the demonstration program, no more than eight states with certified community behavioral health clinics will provide behavioral health services to eligible beneficiaries and be paid using an approved prospective payment system.

Information is available online about the planning grants and demonstration projects; or by contacting RCPA Mental Health Policy Specialist, Sarah Eyster.