State leaders learned about the center’s progress in supporting local families since its launch in January
In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll visited the Community Behavioral Health Center (CBHC) at Cambridge Hospital of Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) on Thursday, May 11. CBHC is one of 25 designated Community Behavioral Health Centers that began operating in Massachusetts earlier this year.
CBHC is a new model of behavioral health care designed to expand access to routine, urgent and crisis treatment for mental health conditions and substance use disorders. At CHA, key CBHC services include a 24-hour Access and Crisis Line (833-222-2030) and Behavioral Health Urgent Care that is open daily for walk-in visits. CHA also provides 24/7 mobile crisis services in individuals’ homes, schools or other community locations.
Lt. Governor Driscoll, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kate Walsh, Department of Mental Health Commissioner Brooke Doyle and the Executive Office of Health and Human Service’s Office of Behavioral Health Chief, Emily Bailey, toured CHA’s Behavioral Health Urgent Care and met with staff members who explained how people are able to get connected to treatment more quickly via same-day evaluations, referrals and evidence-based treatments. The group then participated in a roundtable discussion with CHA clinicians and staff members along with representatives from the Cambridge, Malden and Somerville Public Schools.
The discussion highlighted students’ behavioral health needs and how the CBHC serves as a key resource for immediate care. The conversation provided key insights into how the recent expansion of mental health services, including urgent care, in Massachusetts is making a positive impact and what policy changes could continue to improve much-needed access. It also reinforced CHA’s key partnership with both the Commonwealth and the schools in the communities it serves to advance efficient and high-quality mental health and substance use services for all in need.