Sunday, December 09, 2007

DHHS's Trojan Horse: Community Support Services (how to endanger people's lives)

NC DHHS, following federal guidelines, instituted Community Support Services (CSS)as associated w/ NC Mental Health Reform.

CSS was defunded by DHHS Secretary Hooker Odom in April, 2007. CSS includes everything: emergency services, therapy, skill-building. In defunding that, the state psychiatric hospitals were going to have to pick up the slack.

Additionally, CSS has been utilized by LME's, the old community mental health centers, as a way to CAFTA-like, dumb down therapy services. LME's deny Basic Level services for state funded clients, who were to be included in NC mental health reform. Instead, they expect cheaply paid workers, associated with the Endorsed Provider companies, to provide professional psychotherapy.

CSS have become nothing more than a way to disengage mental health professionals from using their professionally paid skills in order to keep people out of the hospital.

If NC DHHS wants mental health reform to work, they need to realize that a format of psychiatric medication f/u, as necessary, and professionally rendered therapy is the model that has traditionally worked. Yes, CSS have a role but their role is associated with dealing w/ psychosocial stressors.

Instead, DHHS NC's new Secretary, Benton, and DMH's Moseley, have created new Service Definitions for CSS which further advance the rendering of sophisticated services such as psychotherapy by poorly paid CSS workers.


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