MHTTCs Implementing Change
MIC Stories (MHTTCs Implementing Change) feature our MHTTC Regional or National Focus Area Centers’ intensive technical assistance projects that had a significant impact on mental health prevention, treatment, or recovery support services.
The Special Weekly Series for Tribal Schools as they Reopen Amidst COVID-19 ran from Summer to Fall 2020 to open the conversation for the school community on how they prepared and responded to reopening for the 2020-2021 academic year. The series combined peer-to-peer networking and sharing of resources, and brought on members of the Native school community who were having success in the way they were adapting to COVID-19 restrictions to share their experiences and best practices.
The National Hispanic and Latino MHTTC, in collaboration with the Ventura County Office of Education (VCOE), implemented targeted technical assistance to promote cultural and linguistic competence among school district staff serving Hispanic migrant children and their families.
The New England MHTTC Person-Centered Recovery Planning (PCRP) Learning Collaborative project is a multi-agency learning collaborative to provide intense training, TA, and implementation support around the practice of PCRP. It began with a series of introductory webinars in December 2019 and was scheduled to conclude in December 2020; however, supports will be extended for 3 months due to significant project disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Primary faculty are Dr. Janis Tondora of the Yale Program for Recovery and Community Health and Dr. Dan Wartenberg of Newport Mental Health.
Between September 2019 and September 2020, we provided intensive technical assistance (TA) in Motivational Interviewing for four behavioral health service provider agencies. Portions of the intensive TA were on hold during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic as agencies addressed emergent issues, but we were able to restart the project and move forward. The project included face-to-face tailored trainings, consultation, and implementation support for providers, supervisors, and administrators, as well as an ongoing learning community for each group.
The Central East MHTTC, in collaboration with the Annapolis Coalition on the Behavioral Health Workforce and the Community Behavioral Health Association of Maryland, invited organizations to apply to participate in a Workforce Recruitment and Retention Collaborative. This project educated community-based behavioral health providers in Maryland on the multiple factors contributing to the crisis in the recruitment and retention of behavioral staff. The collaborative assisted providers to identify factors influencing their ability to recruit and retain staff and develop individualized action plans. It also provided technical assistance and allowed providers to share progress and receive feedback from members of the Collaborative.
The Southeast MHTTC, in collaboration with the National Center for School Mental Health, implemented the School Mental Health Regional Learning Community to engage the region’s school mental health leaders in advancing comprehensive school-based mental health systems. The Regional Learning Community supported leaders working to advance school mental health by:
- Delivering didactic content related to school mental health tailored to meet needs identified by state leaders in the area
- Disseminating relevant resources, and
- Facilitating shared learning across states
Through support and partnership with the Illinois Association for Behavioral Health (IABH), Great Lakes MHTTC committed to conducting a Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) Training Initiative in 2019 to provide training to adults who work with youth on how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. IABH trained staff to become YMHFA trainers and held nine trainings and trained over 200 adults to become Youth Mental Health First Aiders. As we were in the middle of our first year of this initiative, a new pilot program for Teen Mental Health First Aid (tMHFA) was coming into fruition.
In partnership with the Texas Education Agency and Texas Health and Human Services Commission, the South Southwest MHTTC began a monthly Professional Learning Community to train regional staff as trainers in the National School Mental Health Best Practices: Implementation Guidance Modules and regional coaches to support implementation within LEAs. To increase the relevance of the learning opportunity and pilot implementation within the state, the Texas Education Agency provided a grant to each regional education center to provide training and technical assistance to five small and rural school districts in their region.
The project provided training and technical assistance in enhancing integrated care partnerships and exploring business models for integrated care between a behavioral health organization and a primary care clinic/hospital organization. Additionally, the Mid-America MHTTC provided technical assistance on increasing integration between behavioral health and medical staff to benefit patient experience and outcomes.
Through collaboration with Dr. Smith’s office, the Mountain Plains MHTTC leveraged a connection with the National Association of State Head Injury Administrators (NASHIA) to provide a comprehensive workshop series on evidence-based practices for supporting persons with TBI and co-occurring mental health disorders.
The Bold Conversations Peer Learning Community (PLC) was a six-part, cohort-based workshop series led by the Pacific Southwest MHTTC in the Winter of 2021. It served mental health practitioners and mental wellness advocates in the Pacific Southwest and throughout the United States. Participants in the PLC were able to increase their awareness of self, enhance their skills to communicate more effectively, and increase their confidence in facilitating and engaging in uncomfortable conversations. In this peer learning community, participants learned the principles of engaging in bold conversations to advance equity, and developed an action plan to support their work.
The Northwest ISF Demonstration Project aims to impact student achievement and attainment, increase identification and impact on students with internalizing behaviors, improve wellness, and reduce rates of student discipline problems and related impact of trauma, opioid and substance misuse, suicide prevention, depression, and/or anxiety. The project goals are to increase the capacity of districts to install and sustain effective systems that support the mental wellness of all students at the school level.