Nav: Home

California mental health tax providing services to needy in L.A. County, study finds

March 13, 2018

Funding from California's special tax for mental health services has allowed Los Angeles County to reach the seriously mentally ill and those at risk for mental illness with services and prevention efforts, lowering both homelessness and the need for psychiatric hospitalizations, while improving employment and wellbeing, according to a new RAND Corporation study.

The analysis found that from 2012 through 2016, the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health provided prevention and early intervention services to almost 130,000 youth, and intensive clinical and social services designed to stabilize those who have serious psychiatric illnesses to almost 25,000 youth and adults.

"We found evidence that the services created in Los Angeles County under the Mental Health Services Act are reaching the people they intend to help, and those people are benefitting from the services provided," said Scott Ashwood, lead author of the report and a policy researcher at RAND, a nonprofit research organization.

California voters in 2004 approved Proposition 63, which created a 1 percent tax on all personal income over $1 million to provide expanded mental health services statewide.

Researchers from RAND and UCLA analyzed administrative data to evaluate two types of programs in Los Angeles County supported by the tax. The first is prevention and early intervention programs that aim to prevent the onset of mental illness and the related negative consequences. The second area evaluated was the county's full-service partnership program, which takes a "housing first" approach to improve residential stability and mental health outcomes for people with serious mental illness.

Funding from the Mental Health Services Act allowed the county Department of Mental Health to significantly expand both types of services to reach more people from a wider array of age groups.

The evaluation found that the prevention program provided services to about 130,000 youths, with 65 percent of those served being new clients. Hispanic and Asian youth served by the program had particularly good outcomes in comparison to other groups, although all racial/ethnic groups saw improvements.

"Helping young people can change the trajectory of their lives and potentially put them on a path where they experience less suffering, better relationships and more success in life," Ashwood said.

Researchers found that the number of people receiving services under the full-service partnership program rose over the study period, providing intensive housing support and other social services to about 25,000 adults and children during the period. Participants tended to have a severe diagnosis, such as suffering from schizophrenia or another psychotic disorder, and had a high likelihood of being homeless.

The rate of homelessness dropped sharply among those served by the program and participants also experienced less inpatient hospitalization for their mental health problems. The employment rate also increased among those receiving services, although the overall jobless rate among the group remained high.

Researchers recommend that the county Department of Mental Health revise some of its data collection methods to better document whether program participants are improving and whether best practices are being followed as services are delivered.

The evaluation did not include other county services supported by the Mental Health Services Act, such as primary prevention programs or outreach services, because those efforts do not have data readily available for review.
-end-
Support for the study was provided by the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and the California Mental Health Services Authority.

The study, "Evaluation of the Mental Health Services Act in Los Angeles County Implementation and Outcomes for Key Programs," is available at http://www.rand.org. Other authors of the study are Nicole Eberhart, Lesley Baseman, Aaron Kofner, Gulrez Azhar, Margaret Chamberlin, Jeanne Miranda and M. Audrey Burnam, all of RAND, and Elizabeth Bromley, Sheryl Kataoka, Bonnie Zima, Alethea Marti, Lingqi Tang, Blake Erikson, Kristen Choi and Lily Zhang, all of the UCLA Center for Health Services and Society.

RAND Health is the nation's largest independent health policy research program, with a broad research portfolio that focuses on health care costs, quality and public health preparedness, among other topics.

RAND Corporation

Related Mental Health Articles:

Food insecurity can affect your mental health
Food insecurity (FI) affects nearly 795 million people worldwide. Although a complex phenomenon encompassing food availability, affordability, utilization, and even the social norms that define acceptable ways to acquire food, FI can affect people's health beyond its impact on nutrition.
Climate change's toll on mental health
When people think about climate change, they probably think first about its effects on the environment, and possibly on their physical health.
Quantifying nature's mental health benefits
The BioScience Talks podcast features discussions of topical issues related to the biological sciences.
Sexism may be harmful to men's mental health
Men who see themselves as playboys or as having power over women are more likely to have psychological problems than men who conform less to traditionally masculine norms, according to research published by the American Psychological Association.
Mental health matters
UCSB researchers study the effectiveness of an innovative program designed to help youth learn about mental health.
Could mental math boost emotional health?
Engaging the brain's dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DL-PFC) while doing mental math may be connected with better emotional health, according to Duke researchers.
Program will train mental health providers, improve health care in rural Missouri
A new graduate education program at the University of Missouri has received nearly $700,000 from the Health Resources and Services Administration in the US Department of Health and Human Services to train psychology doctoral candidates in integrated, primary health care settings, in an effort to improve health care for underserved populations with mental health and physical disorders.
Loss of employer-based health insurance in early retirement affects mental, physical health
The loss of private health insurance from an employer can lead to poorer mental and physical health as older adults transition to early retirement, according to a study by Georgia State University.
Ocean views linked to better mental health
Here's another reason to start saving for that beach house: new research suggests that residents with a view of the water are less stressed.
New study shows electronic health records often capture incomplete mental health data
This study compares information available in a typical electronic health record (EHR) with data from insurance claims, focusing on diagnoses, visits, and hospital care for depression and bipolar disorder.

Related Mental Health Reading:

No One Cares About Crazy People: The Chaos and Heartbreak of Mental Health in America
by Ron Powers (Author)

* Finalist for the PEN/E. O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award * Washington Post Notable Book of the Year * People Magazine Best Book of the Year * Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year *

"Extraordinary and courageous . . . No doubt if everyone were to read this book, the world would change."---New York Times Book Review

New York Times
-bestselling author Ron Powers offers a searching, richly researched narrative of the social history of mental illness in America paired with the deeply personal story of his two sons' battles with... View Details


Mental Health: Personalities: Personality Disorders, Mental Disorders & Psychotic Disorders
by Carol Franklin (Author)

At some point in your life you will probably start to think you are losing your mind, or that someone you know is in danger of losing theirs. The truth is that modern life is extremely stressful; there are many demands on your time and never enough hours in the day.


However, being at the end of your tether, worn out and overwhelmed is not the same as having a mental disorder. In fact mental health covers a wide range of illnesses including those which most people are aware of, such as Schizophrenia (which is classed as a psychotic disorder). What you may not be... View Details


Varcarolis' Foundations of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing: A Clinical Approach, 8e
by Margaret Jordan Halter PhD APRN (Author)

Varcarolis' Foundations of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing, 8th Edition is the most comprehensive RN psychiatric nursing text on the market! User-friendly by design, it simplifies the often-intimidating subject of psychiatric-mental health nursing with a practical, clinical perspective. This edition was revised in conjunction with a readability expert to support clarity and ease of understanding. Chapters follow the nursing process framework and progress from theory to application, preparing your students for clinical practice with real-world examples. New to this edition are... View Details


Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing: Concepts of Care in Evidence-Based Practice
by Mary C. Townsend DSN PMHCNS-BC (Author)

Rely on the distinctive voice and dedicated vision of Mary C. Townsend to provide the most clearly written, comprehensive text for psychiatric mental health nursing. Its evidence-based, holistic approach to nursing practice focuses on both biological and behavioral components.



The 8th Edition of this popular text delivers even more of what nursing students need to meet the challenges of health care today. Completely revised and updated throughout, it reflects all of the new knowledge in the field and the practice of mental health nursing today, including DSM-5,... View Details


Better Days - A Mental Health Recovery Workbook
by Craig Lewis (Author)

This book helps those aspiring toward recovery and wellness and also those in recovery, because it addresses and challenges the individual - in very real, basic and honest ways - to make significant cognitive adjustments in how they live their lives. The beauty of this curriculum is that people like to do it and don't consider it a chore, a demand, or a requirement, because every page subtly encourages the individual to think in realistic and forward-moving ways. This allows them to feel good about doing the work. This book is for any person who struggles with their mental health and who... View Details


All the Things We Never Knew: Chasing the Chaos of Mental Illness
by Sheila Hamilton (Author)

"A boldly beautiful page-turner about loving and losing someone with mental illness. I’ll be recommending this absorbing memoir for years to come." —Cheryl Strayed, best-selling author of Wild

Even as a reporter, Sheila Hamilton missed the signs as her husband David’s mental illness unfolded before her. By the time she had pieced together the puzzle, it was too late. Her once brilliant and passionate partner was dead within six weeks of a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, leaving his young daughter and wife without so much as a note to explain his actions, a plan to... View Details


Varcarolis' Foundations of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing: A Clinical Approach, 7e
by Margaret Jordan Halter PhD APRN (Author)

Using a practical clinical perspective, Varcarolis' Foundations of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing: A Clinical Approach, 7th Edition provides a clear understanding of the often-intimidating subject of psychiatric mental health nursing. Clinical chapters follow the nursing process framework and progress from theory to application, preparing you for practice with real-world examples. New to this edition are the latest DSM-5 guidelines along with coverage of trauma, pediatric mental health, and QSEN competencies. From new lead author Dr. Margaret Jordan Halter, this... View Details


Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing
by Sheila L. Videbeck PhD RN (Author)

Exploring the full psychiatric nursing curriculum, from theoretical foundations to interventions for commonly encountered disorders, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing, 7th Edition provides a practical focus on the skills and concepts students need for successful practice. Throughout the book, students have opportunities to learn specific nursing interventions, build therapeutic communication skills, and apply content within the framework of the nursing process. A study guide built into every chapter reinforces student learning and builds critical reasoning skills.  

The... View Details


Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Success: A Q&A Review Applying Critical Thinking to Test Taking (Davis's Q&a Success)
by Cathy Melfi Curtis MSN RN-BC (Author), Audra Baker RN PMHNP APRN ANCC (Author)

2 Books in 1!



Q&A Course Review
NCLEX prep

 


Guarantee your mastery of psychiatric mental health nursing knowledge while honing your critical-thinking and test-taking skills.


 


Over 900 multiple-choice and alternate format questions, organized by specific disorders, make a difficult subject more manageable. Rationales for... View Details


Mental: Lithium, Love, and Losing My Mind
by Jaime Lowe (Author)

A riveting memoir and a fascinating investigation of the history, uses, and controversies behind lithium, an essential medication for millions of people struggling with bipolar disorder.
 
It began in Los Angeles in 1993, when Jaime Lowe was just sixteen. She stopped sleeping and eating, and began to hallucinate—demonically cackling Muppets, faces lurking in windows, Michael Jackson delivering messages from the Neverland Underground. Lowe wrote manifestos and math equations in her diary, and drew infographics on her bedroom wall. Eventu­ally, hospitalized and diagnosed as... View Details

Best Science Podcasts 2018

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2018. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

The Person You Become
Over the course of our lives, we shed parts of our old selves, embrace new ones, and redefine who we are. This hour, TED speakers explore ideas about the experiences that shape the person we become. Guests include aerobatics pilot and public speaker Janine Shepherd, writers Roxane Gay and Taiye Selasi, activist Jackson Bird, and fashion executive Kaustav Dey.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#478 She Has Her Mother's Laugh
What does heredity really mean? Carl Zimmer would argue it's more than your genes along. In "She Has Her Mother’s Laugh: The Power, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity", Zimmer covers the history of genetics and what kinship and heredity really mean when we're discovering how to alter our own DNA, and, potentially, the DNA of our children.