Envisioning the Future: Behavioral Health in NJ
On May 10th, the Good Care Collaborative hosted its 2nd annual conference, Envisioning the Future: Behavioral Health in New Jersey. The conference provided the forum for patients, advocates, payers, providers, and policy leaders to come together to discuss the opportunities for reform to improve care and increase efficiency in our public behavioral health system.
A growing body of research identifies the importance of behavioral health and underscores that integrating behavioral health and medical care will lead to better access to care, healthier patients and communities, and lower treatment costs over time.
Keynote speakers Dr. Corey Waller and Cindy Mann explored the importance of behavioral health care, specifically integrated care, within the context of reform to achieve a more integrated system for our state’s most vulnerable patients. “States throughout the country are focused on integrating care as part of their delivery from initiatives to provide high-quality, cost-effective care to Medicaid beneficiaries with behavioral health needs. There is no one way to move forward, but in all cases it will take strong leadership, deep stakeholder engagement, and accountability,” shared Cindy Mann, Partner at Mannatt, Phelps & Phillips and former Deputy Administrator and Director of the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services within CMS.
The first panel of the day, moderated by John Jacobi from Seton Hall University School of Law, examined the impact of on the ground barriers to licensing and billing changes in an integrated system. Jason Helgerson, Keith Gaither, and Patrick Gordon highlighted the innovations made in their respective state Medicaid systems in the second panel and their path towards integration. “We were surprised by the persistence of the cultural divide between behavioral health and physical health,” said Gordon. They stressed the importance of deep stakeholder engagement.
Senate President Stephen Sweeney ended the conference highlighting the integrated population health data project (iPHD), legislation that he championed and was signed into law on January 2016. “This is a real opportunity to make smarter policies for our state, for our people, not only for people’s health but for our state’s financial health as well.”
GCC Conference in the press
Full list of speakers
Cindy Mann Partner at Mannatt, Phelps & Phillips; Former Deputy Administrator and Director of the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services within CMS
Dr. Corey Waller
Medical Director of the Spectrum Health Medical Group Center for Integrative Medicine.
On the Ground Perspectives: Barriers and Solutions from Patients and Providers
Kim Briggs, South Jersey Behavioral Health Innovation Collaborative (SJBHIC), Nursing Director of Behavioral Health, Virtua
Lynda Bascelli, Medical Director, Project H.O.P.E.
Jose Dipini, Patient/Peer Support Specialist, Collaborative Support Programs New Jersey (CSPNJ)
John Jacobi, Moderator, Director of The Center for Health & Pharmaceutical Law & Policy, Seton Hall University School of Law
Michele Miller, Vice President for Acute and Nursing Services, Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care
Harry Postel, Associate Executive Director, Catholic Charities
Peggy Swarbrick, Director of the Wellness Institute, CSPNJ and Associate Professor, Rutger’s University
National Perspectives: Integration at the State Level
Keith Gaither, Director of Managed Care, TennCare
Jason Helgerson, Medicaid Director, State of New York, Department of Health
Heather Howard, Moderator, Lecturer in Public Affairs and Director, State Health Reform Assistance Network, Princeton University
Patrick Gordon, Associate Vice President, Rocky Mountain Health Plans
Dr. Jeffrey Brenner, Executive Director of the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers
Valerie Harr, Deputy Director, Department of Human Services