Monthly Archives: August 2019

Creating a Behavioral Health Ambulatory Treatment System

To learn more about creating the proposed new system go to Note that you may wish to sign up for updates.

To submit comments and feedback to the Executive Office of Health & Human Services (EOHHS), send your email response to

Below are the questions provided by EOHHS as prompts for our comments, whether at one of the past summer’s Listening Sessions or via your email response (see above). Please consider taking this opportunity to weigh in on your experience and give your suggestions.

Patient and Family Experience

If you, or a family member, were looking for behavioral health treatment, where would you start?

Where would you go if your need was urgent?

What more should the health care system do to address your (or your family member’s) behavioral health treatment needs?

What works well right now (for example, types of treatment, specific providers or health plans)?

Do you receive behavioral health treatment through Primary Care? Why not?

What is the best experience you have had with the treatment system, and what has been the most disappointing?

Do you have innovative or new ideas to improve the patient and family experience?

Behavioral Health Outpatient Specialty

What are the biggest challenges that you face in trying to access outpatient behavioral health care?

What are the biggest barriers or challenges that providers face in meeting their patients’ needs?

Where are the biggest bottlenecks in treatment today?

What types of outpatient behavioral health treatment settings have the longest wait times for treatment access? How are treatment needs met during wait periods?

What aspects of the current outpatient system are working well and should remain intact?


What would you do if you, or a family member, were experiencing a behavioral health crisis?

What is the most significant challenge individuals and families encounter when they are in a behavioral health crisis?

What interventions might be available to people in crisis that are not available today?

What specific changes would you like to see happen that would improve care in the Commonwealth?

Are there strengths within the current crisis care sytem that should be built upon?

Announcing Bridges to Hope

A Free Mental Health Training for Faith Community Leaders

January 21, 2020, 9:00 AM, First Parish Church in Bedford

Because religion and spirituality often play a vital role in healing, it’s not uncommon for families and individuals experiencing mental health issues to turn to a faith leader first for help. Yet faith leaders, staff and key outreach volunteers are often lacking the information, education and resources to be the “bridge to hope” needed as people navigate serious, sometimes life-threatening, mental health issues.

If your community is ready to build bridges to hope for families and individuals living with mental illness, this is a perfect introductory 3-hour training, which features:

  • An informative overview of prevalent mental health myths and common symptoms of mental health disorders
  • First steps to comprehensive Action plans for building “bridges to hope” with your faith community
  • A tool kit of community mental health resources

Who should attend?

Rabbis, imams, clergy, priests, pastors, deacons, elders, and lay leaders.

Please see our flyer for more information.

We do ask that you register in advance for this program. Another announcement will be posted here on our web site when registration becomes available.

Please contact Judith McKendry at with any questions or concerns.

(This project/training was funded through a grant by CHNA 15, and was made possible by Determination of Need funds received from Lahey Hospital & Medical Center and Winchester Hospital.)

Sign Up Now for Fall F2F Classes

NAMI of Central Middlesex is pleased to be offering Family to Family classes in Winchester, Burlington and Littleton this fall. The Family-To-Family Education Program is a 12-week course for family caregivers and friends of individuals living with a serious mental illness. Family to Family is taught by trained family member volunteers. NAMI offers this program at no charge to the participants.

  • Winchester: Starting Tuesday, September 10.
  • Burlington: Starting Thursday, September 12.
  • Littleton: Starting Tuesday, September 24.

Please see our flyer for additional details. For more information, or to sign up for a class, please contact our teachers.

NAMI Massachusetts regularly offers Family to Family in many communities. Please see their class listing for other opportunities to sign up for this valuable educational program.