a monthly newsletter from Integral Care
a monthly newsletter from Integral Care
Some of the top issues facing our community were brought into clear focus in 2019 – homelessness; diverting people with mental illness, substance use disorder, and intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD) from incarceration into care; our children’s mental health and the ongoing importance of raising awareness and reducing the stigma surrounding behavioral health.
In addition to providing a comprehensive array of services this year, Integral Care’s planning efforts and leadership roles in collaborative coalitions helped ensure a local service plan with robust services for Travis County. We are proud of the great strides we have made as a service provider and Local Mental Health and Intellectual and Developmental Disability Authority that improved health and well-being for our community.
Let’s look back at some highlights from 2019.
Community Collaborations Diverting People from Incarceration
Children’s Mental Health
Raising Awareness & Reducing Stigma
Integral Care continues to grow and innovate to ensure a continuum of care meets the needs of our diverse community. In September, we launched a new Strategic Plan to guide us through the next three years. As we close out 2019, we look forward to another decade of Healthy Living for Everyone.
Chief Executive Officer
“I felt like there were no choices left but to use. But when I came to Integral Care, I knew I’d come to the right place.”
– Jane, ThriveCare client
Navigating a path to treatment and recovery is a challenge. The willingness to manage or stop substance use is one hurdle. Then, people can face barriers to getting and maintaining the care they need – like paying for treatment or getting to appointments. That’s where ThriveCare is filling a critical gap in our community.
ThriveCare increases access to substance use treatment and helps individuals in our community recover. Made possible by a grant from Travis County Health and Human Services (TCHHSC), it is a collaboration between Integral Care and TCHHSC.
A woman named Jane recently came to our Psychiatric Emergency Services clinic. She was in withdrawal and ready to change her life, but unsure of where to turn for help to address her opiate addiction. She met with an Integral Care Recovery Navigation counselor that evening. Thanks to ThriveCare, she was able to get a next-day appointment for medication-assisted therapy with a provider in our local network. Before her first dose of buprenorphine, the Integral Care team stayed in contact with her and ensured that she got to that critical first appointment.
“I knew I had come to the right place because they listened to me and didn’t act like it was something out of the ordinary to help with. It was like they said ‘oh yeah, you came to the right place. This is our specialty.”
Since the collaboration’s inception in March, 68 individuals have been connected to treatment delivered by a community provider in our network or at Integral Care. The outcomes are overwhelmingly positive and far exceed the numbers TCHHSC expected.
ThriveCare is helping high-risk populations navigate a complex problem (and often an equally complex system). No matter what the level of need – inpatient detox, residential treatment, intensive outpatient – the collaboration is proving that everyone has the potential to recover from substance use disorders with the right tools and ongoing maintenance.
Could Austin become the healthiest community in the world? St. David’s Foundation (SDF) envisions it, and with their generous support, monumental achievements are possible. Over the last eight years, SDF has given Integral Care considerable grant funding – in excess of $15 million.
In 2013, SDF initiated the evolution of the Judge Guy Herman Center for Mental Health Crisis Care. The Foundation convened experts and organized a field trip for local mental health stakeholders to visit the best practice model being used in Lufkin, Texas. The consensus was that a similar short-term emergency psychiatric crisis care center was exactly the solution Travis County needed to enhance crisis services. SDF began working with key partners (Integral Care and Central Health) to develop this community solution to what had been a long-standing problem. They continue to support the operations of the Herman Center (now in its third year providing stabilization, assessment and treatment for adults experiencing mental health crises).
“St. David’s believes mental health is fundamental to health. Our investments fill critical gaps and are designed to create a stronger continuum of mental health care. Our continued support for Integral Care exhibits our commitment to fully leveraging the important role Local Mental Health Authorities have in ensuring that accessible, high quality mental health services are available to everyone in our community.” – Kim McPherson, Senior Program Officer
Thanks to over $1 million in funding from SDF, Integral Care’s Mental Health First Aid training is free to anyone living in Travis County, Williamson County (in partnership with Bluebonnet Trails Community Services) and other parts of Central Texas. Over 4,500 Central Texans have taken the training through the SDF grant over the past few years, saving lives and reducing stigma around mental illness and substance use disorder. Other essential projects funded by St. David’s Foundation include Integral Care’s new clinic at 3000 Oak Springs, which will provide essential mental health, substance use disorder, and primary care services to residents and eligible adults in the surrounding community.
Integral Care is grateful to the St. David’s Foundation for their tremendous support. Thank you for working every day to build community health and transform the lives of Central Texans, so that everyone has the tools to reach their full potential.
November 2019: Teamwork and Collaboration Impact Homelessness in Travis County
October 2019:Making Strides for World Mental Health
September 2019: Taking Steps to Recovery Support
August 2019: Working Together for Child & Youth Mental Health
July 2019: Legislative Wrap-Up – Some Bipartisan Wins for Healthcare
June 2019: Strengthening Access for Veterans and the Entire Military Family
May 2019: Women and Mental Health
April 2019: Legislative Session Status Report
March 2019: Making Opportunities for Recovery More Accessible
February 2019: Recovery is Possible
January 2019: Stronger Outcomes Through Collaboration
December 2018: Looking ahead to the 86th Texas Legislature
November 2018: How Tech is Changing the Face of Mental Health
October 2018: A Few Questions Could Help Save a Life
September 2018: Anyone Can Save a Life
August 2018: A Milestone Moment
July 2018: Equity in Mental Health Care for All
June 2018: Expanding Services for Veterans
May 2018: Your Mental Health Toolkit
April 2018: Time of Terror Calls for Increased Emotional Support
March 2018: Stopping the cycle of incarceration for individuals with mental illness
February 2018: Equity in mental healthcare for everyone
January 2018 : Improving Mental Health Through Partnership & Collaboration
December 2017: Strength Through Community
November 2017 : Healthy Lifestyles Improve Well-Being
October 2017 : National Child Health Day
September 2017 : Strengthening Families and Communities