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Officers must recognize such behaviors as potentially related to mental illnesses and approach individuals calmly. Consumers are diverted from jail and spend less time in crisis units, where they are linked to appropriate treatment services. It is imperative that CIT training be offered statewide.

Individuals with mental illnesses deserve opportunities to receive appropriate services.

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Putting them in jail is inhumane and impedes their chances for recovery. The purpose of this conference is to support and enhance communication among case managers to promote the general advancement of best practices and service delivery, and to promote a shared commitment to individuals with psychiatric issues in need of or utilizing case management services. Click here for all program details and here to register. See the highlights below and register online through the Conferences section of www.

Interactive Plenary Session: Financial Issues: How it all adds up in achieving recovery oriented integrated care: In order to provide a full array of services and supports to achieve recovery-oriented integrated care for all those with mental health and addiction needs, as well as those with intellectual and developmental disabilities and co-occurring disorders, under an ASO model, rates have to cover costs to ensure access and capacity.

Visit the Conferences section of www. Harold B. Garwin, Esq. Linda Y. The crisis of suicide is continuing in New Jersey and across the nation, as evidenced by several tragedies that occurred in just the past few weeks, let alone previous months and years. The first step is gaining education, which AIR provides.

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We also emphasize that mental health disorders must be addressed just as broken bones, heart conditions and many other health issues are addressed: as promptly as possible, without fear or shame on the part of individuals with the disorders and without stigma or discrimination from health professionals, educators or anyone else. These presentations are clearly having an impact, as illustrated by comments from students, such as the following: "Thank you for making me aware of the possibility that I could have a mental illness.

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After the AIR presentation, I got help and I got diagnosed with depression and a social anxiety disorder. So, thank you again for giving the presentation, ultimately helping me to make the decision to get help and save my life.


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In , the rate of completed suicides among New Jersey's to year-olds was 5. The rate of suicide attempts were 46 per , youths resulting in hospitalization and 49 per , youths resulting in emergency department treatment. New Jersey has had the lowest numbers of adolescent suicides compared to other states for more than a decade, DCF reported. However, "even one suicide is too many and these tragedies could be prevented," according to Moses. Every person also needs unimpeded access to the full continuum of behavioral health treatment and support services.

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NJAMHAA educates government leaders and the general public about the importance and effectiveness of these services, which our members provide throughout the state. Event Highlights. There is no fee for attending this event. In a survey conducted by Healthline two years ago, almost two-thirds of respondents reported "very or somewhat" elevated stress levels during the holiday season.

Accordingly, many people experience symptoms of depression and anxiety during December, which have become known as the "holiday blues.

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NJAMHAA is a trade association representing New Jersey community-based providers of behavioral healthcare services, which can be found in every county statewide and serve , individuals of all ages each year. NJAMHAA members treat people from all walks of life, and many providers can help individuals who are struggling with feelings of stress or depression during the holiday season and beyond, when necessary. NJAMHAA and its members are on the forefront of breaking down stigma and spreading awareness that struggling with mental health challenges is normal, and that seeking treatment is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Wentz, Ph. Symptoms of the holiday blues can include, but are not limited to, loneliness, isolation, trouble concentrating, frustration and fatigue. Manage your expectations. Often times, many individuals have unrealistic expectations of their holiday season. Setting reasonable goals that can be achieved during this season can help foster greater happiness. Stick to normal routines as much as possible to avoid unnecessary stress. This includes regular sleeping, exercise, eating, and drinking habits, which are easily disrupted during the holidays, with so many parties, gatherings, family celebrations, and other events.

Be aware of personal mental health needs. Feelings of depression and anxiety can manifest during the holidays or any time ; if they are persistent, they should be taken seriously, since transitory problems can indicate larger underlying mental health conditions or lead to long-term conditions. Create enough time for self-care.

It is necessary to regroup from the bustling season and give yourself time to take care of your own health or expectations during the holidays. Following these tips during the holiday season and throughout the year can help one maintain good overall health and prevent the holiday blues. Meeting attendees, who included trade association leaders, providers and other stakeholders, were asked to vote for the three top priorities of the 10 goals that the DMHAS Suicide Prevention Committee identified.

The highest priority goals are:. Improve access to community services for persons with mental health and substance use disorders. Implement education for recognition of at-risk behaviors and delivery of effective treatment. Several attendees expressed surprise that "developing and implementing strategies to reduce the stigma associated with being a consumer of mental health, substance use and suicide prevention services" did not become a top priority, based on the voting. However, the group agreed with comments that eliminating stigma should be the foundation for every goal and all of the objectives and action steps associated with the goals.

One individual added that the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention promotes saying "die by suicide," which is probably easier to remember as it is more natural language, just like saying someone died from cancer or died in a car accident. This will change at the end of this Fiscal Year due to an Executive Board decision to allow for a streamlined Board structure with new leadership that will foster innovation.

That's not to say that our seasoned executives are not innovative. They have continued to be visionary, passionate and energetic, which is exactly what NJAMHAA needs to tackle the many challenges facing our system," Dr. Wentz said. We created a Past Presidents Council so we can continue to learn from them and gain valuable guidance from them throughout the remainder of their careers. Wentz also recognized Robert N. Angelo M. Valente, Executive Director of the Partnership, elaborated on the statistics of prescription drug misuse and abuse among all age groups and across the nation -- numbers that clearly show this is an epidemic.

For example, a study in the Annals of Epidemiology estimated that by , nearly 2. In addition, in , about 12 million Americans age 12 and older reported that they took prescription painkillers for nonmedical uses during the past year and in , approximately 1 million emergency room visits could be attributed to prescription drug abuse, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Drug Abuse Warning Network, respectively.

She shared two examples - from Community Care Behavioral Health and New Hope Foundation , which are in Congressman Pallone's district -- of individuals' success in treatment for substance use disorders and other successes that became possible as a result. Click here to see a clip of the event. We are proud to have a diverse membership offering a full continuum of services that enable individuals to live healthy, rewarding and productive lives.

And we greatly appreciate legislative and policy initiatives in our state and federal governments that help make this possible," Moses said. Congressman Pallone, the Ranking Member of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health, wrote his bill to address the issue of Medicare paying for 30, prescriptions for controlled substances that were prescribed by unauthorized individuals.

This issue was reported by a recent report from the Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, "which also states that of these prescriptions, more than 7, were narcotics, such as oxycodone, which have the highest potential for abuse and can be diverted and resold for profit," as explained in a press release issued by Congressman Pallone's office.

Millions of Americans benefit from Medicare's drug coverage program each year, which is why it's imperative that checks are in place to prevent fraud and abuse as well as to protect patients. We cannot allow Medicare's prescription drug program to be compromised at taxpayer expense. My bill, the Medicare Prescription Drug Integrity Act of , will strengthen the Medicare law to help address potential factors contributing to prescription drug abuse," Congressman Pallone said.

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Click here for details on this bill. The ACA will implement several insurance coverage reforms that will expand coverage of uninsured and underinsured people. The Medicaid expansion and federal subsidies will reduce the number of uninsured New Jersey residents by approximately , from the 1. Strengthening of parity is a major provision of the ACA.

The essential health benefits specifically lists mental health and substance use treatment services in addition to extending the provisions of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act MHPAEA into all plans within the health insurance exchanges and the Medicaid expansion, representing a significant step forward in ensuring that these critical services are available to New Jersey residents who need them. The expansion of insurance coverage, implementation of health insurance exchanges and the essential health benefits as well as the extension of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act MHPAEA will go a long way in closing the vast access to treatment gap for mental health and substance use disorders" said Wentz.

The ACA will also eliminate pre-existing denials of coverage; eliminate arbitrary lifetime and annual limits; extend coverage for young adults to remain on their parents insurance until the age of 26; close prescription drug coverage gaps for seniors; extend coverage to tens of millions of Americans; moderate to middle income families will receive tax-credit subsidies for health insurance premiums.

New Jersey's legislators must know that they can solve our state's fiscal challenges by ensuring continual investments into the community behavioral healthcare system. Share this vital message with your local legislators all year long - not just when a budget is about to be passed! Need more details? The temperatures are falling, and the days are growing shorter, signaling the approaching holiday season, which is typically portrayed as a joyful time to celebrate. Yet, reasons such as a loss of a loved one, end-of-year deadlines or family conflict can bring added stress during this season and prevent individuals from experiencing the perfect holiday they hope to have.

Although our economy has been on the rebound, that does not necessarily mean everyone's financial situation is following the same trend. The increased shopping that comes along with the holiday season can also cause serious distress for some people. Having these temporary feelings of anxiety or depression during this time of year is often referred to as the "holiday blues.

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Manage your realistic expectations. Often times, many individuals have impractical expectations of their holiday season. Stick to your normal routines as much as possible to avoid unnecessary stress. This includes your regular sleeping, exercise, eating and drinking habits, which are easily set askew during the holidays. Being aware of your own mental health can help you ascertain if you feel differently compared to earlier months. Uncharacteristic feelings or can manifest during the holidays or anytime ; if they are persistent, they should be taken seriously, since transitory problems can indicate larger underlying mental health conditions or lead to long-term conditions.

Create enough time for yourself.

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