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LCMHS Offices at Harrel Street                                                                                Photo Credit: Will Baker
May was Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental health is essential to everyone’s overall health and well-being. All Americans face challenges in life that can impact their mental health.

Prevention is an effective way to reduce the burden of mental health conditions, and there are practical tools that all people can use to improve their mental health and increase resiliency. Each business, school, government agency, healthcare provider, organization and citizen shares the burden of mental health problems and has a responsibility to promote mental wellness and support prevention efforts.

This year, during the month of May, LCMHS shared information and tools on our website and Facebook page to help and support individuals in their journeys to thrive and live a better, healthier life! These posts will continue to be available to all. Be sure to like us on Facebook and/or visit www.lamoille.org 

As we have done for many years, LCMHS staff joined WLVB FM Radio 93.9 Roland LaJoie, and shared information regarding mental health services provided to the Lamoille County, especially during the COVID19 pandemic.

May 5th: Services available in a COVID world with our CEO, Michael Hartman

May 12th:  Meals being provided to our community with Jim Poirier

May 19th: School Based Clinician services with Katina Idol

May 26th: Shared living providers with Ross King and Ray Gordon

Make sure to check out to the conversations we had in the past years, and learn more about what is available to our community.

Follow links on the left.

Click here to listen
Services during COVID19

LCMHS programs continue to primarily use phone and telehealth to connect with consumers. For the month of April we have continued the trend from March in that nearly all programs are seeing well within a normal range of consumers, and providing a number of services near the norm as well.  However, what is different is the duration of services meaning that we are connecting with consumers, but for shorter periods of time than in the pre-covid time period. 
The scope of Behavioral Health is broad serving adults, 18 and older with severe and persistent mental illness.  This includes psychiatry, therapy, residential services, case management, supported employment, community supports, medication and medical supports and housing sponsorship.  The team of professionals in this division of LCMHS works all year long to provide appropriate, timely and effective services to support people in their recovery and help them achieve their goals.  At times this can be challenging as barriers can be many and resources few.  This was amplified exponentially beginning in March of 2020 when Governor Scott announced the stay at home order due to COVID-19.  To have a snap shot of how the different LCMHS programs within Adult Behavioral Health have been rising to the challenge of serving our community in unconventional ways, while maintaining the dignity and respect of the people they serve, click here. 
 

Self-Care and Resiliency in a Time of Telehealth

Our Adult Outpatient Therapist Brittany Rhoads shared some thoughts about providing therapy from her kitchen table. Click here for the full article.

Feeling overwhelmed with kids at home all day, trying to juggle being a good parent, teacher, and even work from home? Have you run out of patience or activities? Need to talk? Call us at the LCMHS Parent Support Line (802) 735-0115, Mon-Fri from 3pm-9pm.
The Crafty Corner with Janna
Janna Ketchum, one of our Behavior Interventionists, recorded a series of art crafts tutorials not only for our consumers, but any kid (or grown kid) in our community! Below one of her wonderful projects, Coffee Paper Filter Flowers.
To watch ALL videos and join in creating fun art, CLICK HERE. 
 
Gardening is so good for our mental health.
Even something as simple as having a plant on your desk can reduce stress and make you feel more energized and able to think more clearly, and many that suffer from anxiety or depression have found gardening and caring for plants to be incredibly beneficial. Here are some of our employees giving some new life to our flowerbeds last month! Nothing like getting some fresh air, playing with dirt, and catching up... 6 ft apart! Awesome job everyone!
Unified Electronic Medical Records Update
This week LCMHS and 3 other Vermont Designated Agencies, UCS, NCSS and WCMHS, that have been collaborating in a new Unified Electronic Medical Records system for the past 18 months, are receiving the Final Review and Validation from Netsmart Technologies. We are very excited with this new product which will be implemented in each agency in the next few months, as it will bring us to the next century, with modern, easy to use workflows,  support our growth and naturally help our staff focus on what is important, provide service to our consumers without worrying about technology difficulties or restrictions.
Funding and the Designated Agency (DA) System

The state of Vermont, through both the Agency of Human Services (AHS) and Agency of Education (AOE) has continued to provide assurances to the Designated Agencies that funding, especially for Medicaid services continues to be a priority.  At this time the DS and Child and Adult Mental Health services are clearly funded at our current levels through to December 31, 2020.  There are obvious pressures on the state to also address the significant shortfall in tax revenue at present and in the near future, but at least through the end of September we do not expect any reductions.  The state is engaged in a short term budget to get to the October 1, 2020 point at which time the federal budget for 2021 will be in force and there will be more clarity on what federal support for states will be.  Thus the term, “skinny budget” for state government has emerged, meaning the point from July 1 until the end of September.  Thus we still don’t know exactly what the funding situation will be starting October 1, but this should come into view by mid or end of summer.

Donations at no cost. What?
Support Lamoille County Mental Health Services when you shop via Amazon Smile. It's quick, easy and you will be helping a great cause!
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