New Mental Health Services Option and the State of Mental Health Report

In Blog, Featured, Mental Health Resources by Anna Gouker

As residents of Wisconsin, it is everyone’s responsibility to improve the state of mental health and at ERI we are dedicated to doing our part.

Comprehensive Community Services (CCS) program

One program that is making its way throughout Wisconsin is the Comprehensive Community Services (CCS) program, and it is hoped that the program will give support to a population frequently underserved. CCS was introduced to Dane County in July of 2015 in order to provide necessary support to Medicaid recipients who have the ability and desire to coordinate their own services.  Additional factors involved in eligibility are results of a functional screen as well as having a documented need for psychosocial rehabilitation services. CCS covers a variety of service areas that include but are not limited to:

  • peer support
  • skill development/enhancement
  • employment-related/ skill training.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

The Recovery model of mental health services is defined by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) as “a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential.” ERI is committed to supporting those in our community through the recovery process and proud to be one of the CCS service providers in Dane County.

SAMHSA recently released its assessment of the state of mental health in the United States. In the report, researchers determined rates of substance use, binge drinking among youth, mental health treatment as well as the prevalence of depression. When compared to the national averages, each state is measured on how it is addressing and serving the mental health needs of its residents.

Wisconsin and Mental Health Needs

Wisconsin remains consistent with national percentages among a majority of the issues including treatment for a major depressive episode. Although a notable difference existed within the rate of binge alcohol use among adolescents with 17.5% for Wisconsin 14% within the rest of the U.S. With all of the angles that mental health is analyzed within the study, we are most reminded by the practical functions of mental health services when examining the rates of employment. Among adults served in Wisconsin’s public mental health system in 2014, the vast majority were reportedly not part of the labor force (47.9% of those aged 18-20, 58.6% of those aged 21-64, and 87.7% of those aged 65 or older).

Statistics such as these provide necessary markers for evaluating how well the current services and supports are meeting the needs of the public. Now that the CCS program is available in Dane County, ERI is thrilled to have a new means of supporting individuals in their recovery as well as the pursuit of employment.

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About the Author

Anna Gouker

Anna provides planning assistance in achieving and maintaining employment by connecting people to community resources, providing career exploration and counseling services. She is dedicated to assisting adults with disabilities in achieving their personal and professional goals. Anna holds a Master’s of Science degree in Rehabilitation Psychology from UW-Madison. Prior to joining the ERI team, Anna gained experience in counseling and developed an extensive knowledge in community resources. She interned at several local nonprofits including Chrysalis and Community Living Alliance. Her passion for disability advocacy led to her position on the Board of Directors at Disability Pride Madison. In her free time, Anna enjoys volunteering in the community and currently serves as Co-Vice Chair on the City of Madison Commission on People with Disabilities.