CAFE TAC News and Notes for April 12, 2016

In our last message, we let you know about our latest Focus newsletter, Supported Education: Examining the Evidence. Coincidentally, we happened across a report from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at the US Department of Health and Human Services this week that has a lot to add on the question of just how much evidence there is to validate supported education as an investment-worthy practice.

This report, entitled Feasibility Study for Demonstration of Supported Education to Promote Educational Attainment and Employment among Individuals with Serious Mental Illness, notes that “Findings from the current review of research, policy, and practice indicate that SEd is on the cusp of widespread and sustained implementation.” It points to the need for a “two-stage demonstration program” with careful implementation followed by a randomized controlled trials to obtain the necessary evidence for supported education to become an official evidence-based practice, concluding “Such a program would provide the platform necessary to generate the potential evidence needed to move SEd from a promising practice to an evidence-based practice, thus encouraging future funding and widespread adoption.”

This report confirms our belief that supported education is on the verge of becoming widely accepted. If you’re interested, you can read the full report here. CAFÉ TAC will continue to keep you updated on the latest developments in supported education and efforts to demonstrate its value and efficacy.

Of course, there’s a lot happening in the world of mental health beyond developments in supported education, including the Alternatives Conference call for presentations, multiple webinars and new funding opportunities. To see what’s caught our attention, please see below!

Alternatives Conference

The 2016 Alternatives Conference is being held September 19-23 in San Diego, CA, and presentation proposals are currently being accepted. If you would like to submit a proposal, you must do so by May 23rd. To view the call for presentations, and learn more about the process, visit the Alternatives website:

Despite Bipartisan Support, Mental Health Reform Bill Could Be Derailed

Here’s an update on federal efforts at mental health reform, which appear to be slowing with attention focused on the upcoming Presidential election and pending Supreme Court nomination.

Tennessee Passes Anti-LGBT Counseling Bill

A bill passed by Tennessee’s legislature would allow mental health providers to decline to treat people based on their gender identity or sexual orientation.

Webinar: Application of MHPAEA to Medicaid and CHIP

Thursday, April 14

1:00 PM ET

SAMHSA and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) invite you to join a presentation of the final rule on mental health and substance use disorder parity for Medicaid and CHIP. This rule implements the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (MHPAEA) for 23 million beneficiaries enrolled in Medicaid managed care organizations (MCOs), Medicaid alternative benefit plans (ABPs), and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), ensuring that benefits for mental health and substance use disorder treatments and services are offered on equal footing with medical and surgical benefits.

This presentation will include a discussion of the application of parity to Medicaid and CHIP programs, key changes from the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and answers to frequently asked questions.

Register at


Webcast: Medical Leave for Students Experiencing Suicidal Ideation-Title II Clarifications: Clinical, Administrative, & Legal Perspectives

May 2, 2016

1:00pm – 3:00pm ET

Many administrators believe that Title II limits the ability of schools to remove students with suicidal ideation or suicidal behaviors.  Presented live from the Garrett Lee Smith Campus Suicide Prevention Grantee Meeting, a panel of campus health administration and policy experts will discuss the ramifications of Title II and the Americans with Disabilities Act, in general; and clarify the range of options for colleges and universities in the management of suicidal crises.

Visit for more information.


New York Invests $2 Million in Mental Health Ad Campaign         

New York City has undertaken a major campaign to create a public conversation about mental health and public attitudes on the issue.


Webinar: Iron Circle Native Peer Recovery Network

April 20th

11:00 AM PDT / 2:00 PM EDT

Iron Circle is an emerging peer run group started by Klamath Tribal Members. Iron Circle is using culture and a network of peers to promote recovery within the community in which they live. This webinar will focus on Iron Circle’s beginnings, and how they were able to form and become a viable option for Natives in recovery.

Register here:


Funding Opportunity: Resiliency in Communities After Stress and Trauma

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2016 Resiliency in Communities After Stress and Trauma (Short Title:  ReCAST Program) grants.  The purpose of this program is to assist high-risk youth and families and promote resilience and equity in communities that have recently faced civil unrest through implementation of evidence-based, violence prevention, and community youth engagement programs, as well as linkages to trauma-informed behavioral health services.  The goal of the ReCAST program is for local community entities to work together in ways that lead to improved behavioral health, empowered community residents, and reductions in trauma and sustained community change.


Funding Opportunity: Cooperative Agreements for Tribal Behavioral Health.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is accepting applications for cooperative agreements for Tribal Behavioral Health (Short Title: Native Connections) grants totaling up to $94.8 million over the course of five years.

The purpose of this program is to prevent and reduce suicidal behavior and substance use, address trauma, and promote mental health among American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) young people up to and including age 24.

SAMHSA expects to fund as many as 94 grantees with up to $200,000 each per year for up to five years.  The actual award amount may vary, depending on the availability of funds.

Learn more at


Can You Trust an App with Your Mental Health?

There are hundreds of smart phone apps dedicated to behavioral health, but are they effective? Or is relying on your device to relate to the world part of the problem?


Webinar: Learning About the Care Transitions Network in New York State

Wed., April 13 and again on Wed., April 20

10:00 AM ET

Enrollment is open for the Care Transitions Network for People with Serious Mental Illness, a federally funded initiative to reduce all-cause re-hospitalization rates for people with chronic and severe mental health conditions in New York State.

Join this 30-minute webinar to learn how to enroll in the network and how the Care Transitions Network is providing clinicians and their organizations with the resources and data to become clinical leaders in their communities and confidently transition to value-based payment models.

Register:  and


Issue Brief: Key Ingredients for Successful Trauma-Informed Care Implementation

Experiencing trauma, including exposure to abuse, neglect, discrimination, violence, and other adverse experiences, may lead to lifelong chronic illness and behavioral health conditions. As this link becomes increasingly clear, providers and policymakers are interested in improving care and reducing costs by using health care approaches that take patients’ trauma histories into account.

Drawing on insights from experts across the country, this new brief outlines a practical framework for implementing clinical and organizational practices in health care settings to address the complex impact trauma has on patients and providers. It explores opportunities for improving care, reducing health care costs for individuals with histories of trauma, and incorporating trauma-informed principles throughout the health care organization. The paper also considers policy changes at the payer and health system levels that can help support the adoption of trauma-informed care approaches.


Here Are the Facts on Mental Health and Socioeconomic Status to Put Things in Perspective

To those in the larger mental health community, the idea of “social determinants” is relatively familiar. Outside social forces like poverty and lack of housing are strongly correlated with poor mental health. This article examines some of the data behind that relationship.


Benefits of Medicaid Expansion for Behavioral Health

A recently-published brief from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at the US Department of Health and Human Services highlights the positive impact on behavioral health treatment access that is being realized in states that have chosen to expand Medicaid.


With Advanced Training, Peers Gain Credibility

As peer support professionals continue to build credibility and play a larger part in the mental health system of care, programs to offer professional development and advanced training have become more common. This Behavioral Healthcare article examines the growth of peer support, and the role of training and professional development in the field’s growth.


Share Your Voice: HEADCASE: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Writers and Artists on Mental Illness

HEADCASE: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Writers and Artists on Mental Illness was originally conceived as an anthology of curated personal pieces that include essays, poems, illustrations, and photographs by writers and artists both established and new. The book aimed to explore the themes of mental health, mental illness, and experiences of the mental health care systems by members of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) communities.

We are currently expanding the anthology to include clinical perspectives as we begin working with an academic publisher. The finished book will appeal to both lay readers and mental health professionals. While we are at capacity for submissions from peers, consumers, and other individuals with lived experience, at this time we do seek contributors from LGBTQ communities who possess clinical expertise and professional credentials to submit content relevant to the anthology. Community members who fall into both categories are particularly encouraged to submit queries.

Learn more at