New pilot program links medical care and mental health services in clinics

Kentuckians in need of mental and behavioral health services can receive primary medical care in one location

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Calling this “a significant advance in the delivery of behavioral health care in Kentucky,” Gov. Andy Beshear announced Monday that four community mental health clinics are participating in a federal initiative to expand the access to behavioral care, mental health care and medical services.

“Kentuckians struggling with multiple issues such as depression, anxiety and substance abuse need access to care,” Governor Beshear said. “These clinics bring together behavioral and physical health services under one roof and tailor services to the needs of the individual and improve health outcomes.”

The initiative, called the Demonstration Program for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC), is part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and is already helping Kentuckians in need. Under the demonstration program, providers will receive enhanced federal funding for treating Medicaid patients.

The four community mental health centers that have been funded, after going through a rigorous certification process that qualifies them to provide care in this expanded way, include NorthKey Community Care (859-331-3292) in northern Kentucky; New Vista (800-928-8000) in central Kentucky; Seven County Services (502-589-1100) in Jefferson County; and Pathways Inc. (606-324-114) in northeast Kentucky.

These designated CCBHCs are part of a larger national program in which only 10 states have been selected to participate. It was created to show the effectiveness of a health care service delivery and payment model that streamlines multiple types of care.

Kentucky’s selection was influenced by the state’s “significant progress in caring for these vulnerable people,” the governor said. “We believe health care is a basic human right.”

Eric Friedlander, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Family Services, said, “These sites will allow us to move beyond a system that often requires multiple providers and hampers communication and coordination of care. This is a huge step forward in building a recovery-oriented healthcare system in Kentucky.

Individuals can contact these clinics by phone or through their websites. Additional information can be found at samhsa.gov/section-223.