Policy Impact and Implications Paper

Assignment 1:  Policy Impact and Implications Paper

During the 2018 Saks Institute of Mental Health Law, Policy, and Ethics, Dr. Elinore F. McCance-Katz, MD, PhD, Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration-SAMHSA, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, shared the following presentation, Changing Focus: The Right to Treatment of Serious Mental Illness. In this presentation, 5 focus recommendations were provided, Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee. Here is the link to the PDF presentation. https://www.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/the_right_to_treatment.pdf Here is the video of the presentation. https://www.you tube. com/watch?v= ALsi5kUbe7Y “I” statements are acceptable.


Focus 2: Access and Engagement: Make It Easier to Get Good Care

  • Early identification and intervention for youth

Crisis intervention services development

  • Continuum of care with outpatient services as alternatives to inpatient care/psychiatric bed capacity
  • Reassessment of civil commitment standards and processes

Use of new technologies to increase access e.g., telehealth

Focus 5: Develop Finance Strategies to Increase Availability and Affordability of Care

  • Eliminate financing practices that discriminate against behavioral healthcare
  • Enforce existing parity laws

1) Identify an area of interest/challenge within the area of addiction treatment. Examples of this can be drug court or safe injection sites. Choosing an area of interest/challenge is not required, but will be helpful in narrowing your research. The area of interest would be Preventive Medicine for homeless with drug abuse. Needle exchange programs.

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2) Look at the above SAMHSA 5 recommendations (above) to improve care for persons who live with serious mental illness (which includes addiction). Remember, this course focuses on a population of people who live with addiction and this topic is the focus of this assignment. There is no writing required for this section; you will just be considering.

3) Choose 1 Focus and answer the following questions, consider the bullet points that are naturally relevant to your interest within the Focus. PLEASE USE ALL HEADINGS AS LISTED BELOW.

  • Provide a brief history and current context of your area of interest, using professional/academic literature and/or official websites. (The PowerPoint stack,

Changing Focus: The Right to Treatment of Serious Mental Illness, can be used, as well as the references listed on the last slide.)

  • Explain how you suggest to successfully implement each value/bullet point under the Focus Area. List each bullet point as a separate heading.
  • What barriers are you aware of that would impede your implementation and how would you suggest managing this barrier?

Briefly share your final thoughts about what you have learned in this research


Policy Impact and Implications

            Homelessness is a prevalent issue in United States of America and it affects women, children, men as well as every ethnicity and races. Within the United States of America, about 800,000 people are apparently homeless and this is about 1 percent of the population (Maness & Khan, 2014). Previous research has projected that 5 to 8 million residents of America faced homelessness in the past five (5) years, plus Philadelphians to be approximately 1.0 percent, and New Yorkers 1.2 percent were staying in shelters for the homeless every year (Stringfellow et al., 2016). Majority of experiences for the homeless are short-term, that last a number of days to quite a few weeks. Additionally, homeless individuals always face severe conditions of health such as mental health and issues related to abuse of drugs.            

In a cross-section research of United States, 43 percent of the homeless individuals had either an issue with substance abuse or mental health plus an added 23 percent had simultaneous mental illness along with issues on substance abuse (Maness & Khan, 2014). Often times, homelessness is caused by substance abuse. According to a survey carried out in 25 towns by United States Conference of Mayors revealed that that the most three leading reasons for homelessness as substance abuse particularly among single adults (was reported in about 68 percent of towns). Additionally, drug abuse was reported in 12 percent of towns as the leading cause of homelessness in families Maness & Khan, 2014). Among homeless individuals, two-thirds asserted that alcohol/drug abuse were that main …………….

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