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SAMHSA Expands Vital Mental Health Services

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) recently received additional funding due to the fiscal year (FY)2014 "Consolidated Appropriations Act" (P.L. 113-76), which allowed Congress to expand funding over the FY13 post-sequestration amounts. This funding will be used to expand vital mental health services, with a focus on children and youth.

During FY14, SAMSHA will receive $276 million which will be used to expand mental health services through several new initiatives under the President's "Now is the Time" plan. The initiatives will focus on providing training for teachers on childhood mental health issues; providing mental health services to youth and their families; training additional mental health professionals to serve students and young adults; training to increase cultural competence among behavioral health professionals; and providing support to people aged 16 to 25 who are at high risk for mental illness, substance abuse, or suicide.

Congress also approved additional funding for the Mental Health Block Grant, which will receive an additional $24 million to develop programs in states and territories to address early signs of serious mental illness. Additionally, SAMHSA's Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant will receive $109 million in additional funding to expand community-based substance abuse prevention and treatment programs.

Read about TAC's work on Behavioral Health.