Steinberg Institute

Governor Agrees: Time for CA to get strategic about early intervention in mental illness

Posted on Thursday, September 27, 2018

Governor Jerry Brown today signed into law Senate Bill 1004, marking a watershed moment for the delivery of mental health care in California. The bill will ensure far more families across the state have access to high-quality mental health services that aim to intervene before a brain illness becomes disabling. By requiring California to be more strategic in its approach to prevention and early intervention in mental illness, SB 1004 has the potential to change the lives of tens of thousands of Californians at risk of a serious brain illness and ultimately to turn the tide in our homelessness crisis.

SB 1004, co-authored by Senators Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, and John Moorlach, R-Costa Mesa, was the Steinberg Institute’s priority legislation for 2018. It marks a major step in our efforts to standardize and scale up access to high-quality prevention and early intervention (PEI) programs funded by the Mental Health Services Act. That’s the millionaire’s tax passed in 2004 that now generates $2.2 billion a year for mental health care in California.

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Proposition 2: Key Questions and Answers

Posted on Monday, September 24, 2018

What is Proposition 2?

Proposition 2 will provide permanent supportive housing linked to treatment and services to help people with serious mental illness who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless.

Why do we need Proposition 2?

We have a homelessness crisis in California that is straining our neighborhoods, businesses and public services.  More than 134,000 Californians are living on the streets and as many as one-third of them are suffering from untreated mental illness. We also know the solution: Research shows that providing permanent supportive housing, linked to intensive services, has proven successful at getting people who are homeless and have a serious mental illness off the streets and into effective care. A recent RAND analysis that tracked a permanent supportive housing program in Los Angeles County found the foundation of housing helped get more than 3,500 people off the streets since 2012 and reduced taxpayer costs by 20 percent.

Who is the target population to be served?

Prop 2 will help adults with serious mental illness and children with severe emotional disorders and their families who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

How does Proposition 2 work?

Prop 2 builds permanent supportive housing linked to mental health treatment and services – at no new cost for taxpayers – under a $2 billion bond. The bond will be financed using the Mental Health Services Act, also known as Proposition 63, the millionaire’s tax passed by California voters in 2004 that now generates $2.2 billion annually to improve mental health care across the state. Prop 2 will use just 6 percent of the annual revenue generated under the Act, with funding going to local communities and all California counties to support planning and construction of permanent supportive housing. The housing must be linked to support services for residents that are on site or easily accessible.

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Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Prevention and Early Intervention Mental Health Programs Passes Assembly

Posted on Thursday, August 30, 2018

August 29, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Victor Ruiz-Cornejo, victor.ruiz-cornejo@sen.ca.gov, 415.604.6817

Sacramento –  Today, Senator Scott Wiener’s (D-San Francisco) Senate Bill 1004, a bipartisan bill to expand effective prevention and early intervention programs for children, teenagers, young adults, and underserved individuals experiencing early signs of severe mental illness passed the California Assembly by a vote of 61-0. SB 1004 now heads to the Senate for its final vote.

SB 1004 requires a much more structured and strategic approach to prevention and early intervention mental health programs funded by the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA),passed by California voters in 2004 through Proposition 63 to provide funding for community-based mental health services

The bill is sponsored by the Steinberg Institute, founded by Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, who authored Prop 63.

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Steinberg Institute accepting applications for office manager

Posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2018

The Steinberg Institute is accepting applications for the position of office manager. We’re looking for a highly motivated, collaborative, solutions-oriented self-starter who has a passion for details. The successful candidate will possess superior judgment, excellent written and verbal communication skills, and will enjoy managing multiple projects simultaneously.

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Senate passes bill to make CA first state with voluntary workplace mental health standards

Posted on Friday, April 27, 2018

Landmark legislation that would make California the first state in the nation to establish voluntary mental health standards for the workplace was approved on the Senate floor Thursday by unanimous vote and moves to the Assembly with strong bipartisan backing. SB 1113, authored by Senator Bill Monning, D-Carmel, marks a bold effort to combat the stigma that still shrouds mental health in our nation and ensure mental illness is addressed with the same respect and urgency as physical illness in the workplace.

For years, employers have seen the wisdom of providing their employees with gym memberships, exercise space and nutritional snacks, having been schooled in the clear cost benefits of supporting physical well-being. SB 1113 would bring that same level of attention to supporting employee mental health.

In any given year, one in four Californians endures a mental health crisis, and yet mental health remains an uncomfortable and often unaddressed issue in many workplace settings. Research tells us that lack of attention comes at great cost for both employers and employees: Mental health issues are the single most expensive category of health costs for many employers, across all industries and sizes. The loss of employee productivity due to depression alone is estimated to cost U.S. companies as much as $44 billion per year.

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Mental Health Bills On the Move in California

Posted on Thursday, April 19, 2018

Our public policy team is pressing forward with a package of sponsored bills that so far has garnered strong support from legislators on both sides of the aisle. It’s a bold agenda that advances some key themes: scaling up best practices for prevention and early intervention in mental illness; marshaling far more resources to combat the state’s crisis of homelessness; continuing the push toward a system of care in which mental health is treated with the same sweep and urgency as physical health; and growing our mental health workforce. Read on for a snapshot of our priorities for the 2018 session.

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RAND: CA’s Mental Health Services Act Benefits Tens of Thousands in L.A. County

Posted on Tuesday, March 13, 2018

California’s Mental Health Services Act has benefitted tens of thousands of Los Angeles County residents, funding services that fostered significant improvements in mental health and wellbeing, as well as measurable gains in housing, employment and living conditions, according to findings of a new RAND Corporation report.

The 53-page report, commissioned by Los Angeles County, is the first extensive, independent analysis of the county-level impacts of the Mental Health Services Act, or Proposition 63, a millionaire’s tax approved by California voters in 2004. The researchers conclude the county is reaching a highly vulnerable and diverse population, and that overall the people engaged in those programs experience significant improvements in their mental health and life circumstances.

“There have been several audits criticizing the MHSA, but we finally have some great news to share today,” said Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, who authored the groundbreaking legislation while serving in the State Assembly. “This report demonstrates to the public what we have known for many years:  tens of thousands of people are getting desperately needed help. The MHSA is affecting thousands of lives.”

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Mental Health Delivery: The Global Forefront

Posted on Wednesday, March 7, 2018

It was a day to discuss “the possible.” On Feb. 28, Senator Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, in partnership with the Steinberg Institute, hosted a remarkable briefing that featured global leaders at the forefront of innovation and transformation in mental health care delivery. These are people making a striking and measurable difference in varied aspects of care, including early prevention and intervention in youth mental health; neighborhood-centered crisis care; homeless services; community education; and eradication of stigma. Each has managed to scale up and standardize best practices across a broad population. The common threads? Bold vision; committed leadership; and clearly defined strategic objectives.

We believe there are lessons for California in understanding how these innovators have succeeded in shifting the tide. Access the link below to find the speakers’ visual presentations, a photo gallery and a video of the day’s discussions.

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Join Us Feb. 28 For A Special Capitol Briefing: The Global Forefront of Mental Health Delivery

Posted on Thursday, February 22, 2018

State Sen. Richard Pan, in collaboration with the Steinberg Institute, will host a Capitol briefing for legislators and policymakers on Wednesday, Feb. 28, from 1 p.m.-4 p.m., to explore how changes in leadership, organizational structure and strategic vision could result in more effective delivery of mental health services in California.

The goal is to both educate and inspire by convening recognized leaders in the mental health community who are making a striking and measurable difference in outcomes. Among the speakers:

— Roberto Mezzina, Director of the Department of Mental Health in Trieste, Italy, who has pioneered a successful model for replacing mass institutionalization with integrated community-based care.
— Nicole Sherren, Scientific Director with the Alberta Family Wellness Initiative, an effort based in Canada that translates research on brain development, addiction and mental illness into policies and practices that support healthy outcomes.
— Pat McGorry, Executive Director of Orygen, a leading research institute in Australia that has transformed that country’s approach to early intervention for youth mental health.
— Ann Sullivan, Commissioner, N.Y. State Office of Mental Health, who has advanced a statewide network dedicated to early intervention in psychosis-related illness.

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Powerhouse forum takes on critical challenges in mental health workforce

Posted on Thursday, February 8, 2018

The Steinberg Institute partnered with Kaiser Permanente last month to host a high-powered forum exploring challenges facing California’s mental health workforce, and innovative strategies for rethinking and adapting our traditional models of care. Our speakers brought expertise from across the nation. The audience was composed of representatives for leading policymakers, hospital systems, health organizations, research institutes, mental health providers, government agencies and advocacy groups. And the day was devoted to solutions. Go to the full article to access the visual presentations, photo gallery and forum packet.

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