CMHA Board and Staff Receive Family Champions Award
CMHA board member Barbara Brown, Senior Director of Education and Rehabilitation Services at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, and Dr. Manzoor Usman, CMHA psychiatrist, were recipients of the Connecticut Council of Family Service Agencies (CCFSA) Family Champions Award. The award honors those who demonstrate a commitment to strengthening Connecticut’s families.
Pictured at the CCFSA awards ceremony on May 23 are CMHA Chairman of the Board Nick Pettinico, CMHA Board Member and CT Children’s Medical Center Sr. Director of Education and Rehabilitation Services Barbara Brown, CMHA President & CEO Ray Gorman, and CMHA psychiatrist Dr. Manzoor Usman.
West Hartford Lacrosse Teams Host Food-Raiser for CMHA Kids
Members of West Hartford girls varsity lacrosse teams united for a good cause at the cross town rivalry game on April 27 between Conard and Hall High schools. Players from both teams, as well as girls from the West Hartford Youth Lacrosse League, collected healthy snacks to be donated to CMHA's Child & Family Services intensive outpatient programs for children in New Britain and Waterbury.
Celebrating Supported Employment
CMHA's Vocational Services Program hosted a Supported Employment Appreciation Breakfast on April 4 at the New Britain Police Department. The event honored local companies who hire clients served by the program. CMHA’s Vocational program offers job search, resume, and interview skill assistance; transportation to and from job interviews, career and interest exploration, and other services to CMHA clients recovery from mental illness and/or substance abuse.
Political News Site Covers a Day in the Life of CMHA Program
Political news website The CT Mirror published an in depth look at CMHA's Assertive Community Treatment Team (ACTT), which provides intensive support to mentally ill clients, enabling them to remain in the community rather than being institutionalized. The article does a wonderful job of illustrating the circumstances of ACTT clients and the team of CMHA clinicians who work tirelessly to support their recovery.
President & CEO Ray Gorman Urges Legislators to Reject Proposed Budget Cuts
CMHA President & CEO Ray Gorman testified on February 15 before members of the Appropriations Committee of the General Assembly at the State Capitol regarding Governor Malloy’s proposed budget cuts to mental health and substance abuse treatment services.
Representing not only CMHA, but also the 120 agency members of the CT Community Providers Association (CCPA), Gorman voiced concerns and warned of impending reduced staff, reduced care, and rising operation costs leading to an erosion of services if the budget passes as proposed and Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) grants are reduced by approximately 90%.
Most of CMHA’s clients are unable to afford to pay for care, and budget cuts will ultimately result in turning clients away because, as Gorman said, “Medicaid rates for outpatient services only cover 50-60% of the cost of care.”
“Behavioral health care providers have experienced an entire decade without appropriate increases to their funding amidst rising demand for services from the expansion of Medicaid, the recession, and the changes in the commercial insurance market.” Gorman said. “As an industry and a state, we also face the challenge of how to respond to another 50,000 new Medicaid recipients under the Affordable Care Act, with a behavioral health care system that cannot meet current demand.”
Gorman closed by urging the General Assembly to reject the cuts and to examine in depth what is needed to ensure that everyone in Connecticut has access to behavioral health services.