BELLEVILLE, N.J., December 19, 2017 -- Northwest Essex Community Healthcare Network has opened the only Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic in Essex County, which broadly expands the range of substance use and mental health disorder services offered for families and individuals, including patient referrals from other healthcare providers. The new clinic includes the first ambulatory detox program in the county.

Northwest Essex was one of seven CCBHCs selected by the N.J. Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services to receive federal funding through the Excellence in Mental Health Act demonstration program, a two-year, eight-state initiative that will infuse more than $1 billion into the behavioral healthcare system. The program aims to expand access to quality mental health and addiction care nationwide, while improving Medicaid reimbursement for these services.

“Our clinic integrates community-based mental health, addiction and physical healthcare to ensure better outcomes for the people we serve,” said Anthony Lucibello, executive director, Northwest Essex. “We manage the whole person’s health, not just his or her mental health. We coordinate services with other care providers to assure quality and consistency of care.”

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The clinic will provide a range of services, especially for individuals with the most complex needs, including children and adults with emotional or mental health disorders, persons with substance use disorders, members of the armed services and veterans.

Northwest Essex is currently running PSAs in central New Jersey, which can be viewed on the Northwest Essex website and here

Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics

CCBHCs use a model of care similar to a behavioral health home that takes a holistic approach to treatment through a team of clinicians to deliver or coordinate delivery of all healthcare supports for the patient. Some services must be offered directly by the CCHBC, while others can be offered through a formal agreement with other organizations.  

CCBHC will collect and report data in areas such as hospital and emergency room visits, compliance with medications and health status. The process begins with a baseline screening during a patient’s enrollment to help track progress throughout treatment.

CCBHCs offer nine types of required services provided directly or through partner organizations, including:

·       Screening, assessment and diagnosis

·       Outpatient mental health and substance use disorder services

·       Psychiatric rehabilitation and Partial Care services

·       Primary care screening and monitoring

·       24‐hour crisis screening

·       Targeted case management

·       Peer support services and family support services

·       Services for members of the armed services and veterans

The Excellence in Mental Health Act of 2014 set a common definition for CCBHCs, including coordination with other service providers, and a Prospective Payment System to more adequately reimburse CCBHCs for services provided. The law provided funding for 24 states to develop the demonstration program. The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency selected eight of those states for program funding over two years.

About Northwest Essex

Northwest Essex Community Healthcare Network, Inc. has been serving persons with disabilities and their families since 1958. Northwest Essex offers a comprehensive range of services that includes behavioral health care services, a private school for children with disabilities and a vocational rehabilitation program for people with developmental and psychiatric disabilities. Treatment is customized for an individual’s needs and uses a recovery and wellness approach to maximize an individual’s potential.  For more information, visit http://northwestessex.org/.