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Military behavioral health initiative to be become part of state agency

Will join Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities

FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 17, 2014) — Kentucky’s military behavioral health initiative, started in January 2013 to bring enhanced care and coordinated services to service members, family members and veterans, will become part of the state’s Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities (DBHDID) to build upon its success to date, Gov. Steve Beshear announced today.soldier-and-flag

“This initiative has made critical inroads and accomplishments in making quality care and services available to our active military, veterans and their families,” Beshear said. “Aligning the program with an existing state agency tasked with similar goals will create synergy and add momentum, ensuring that the advances that have been made in this area continue.”

Among those achievements:

  • Military behavioral health coordinators have been trained and established in all 14 regional community mental health centers
  • Programs such as Operation Headed Home and Operation Immersion have received continued support and development. These are state-level programs designed to address the reintegration needs of service members and their families, as well as train behavioral health and health care providers on the unique aspects of military life in order to improve services to this patient population
  • A full-time program administrator position for military behavioral health in Kentucky was developed and filled within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services
  • The Kentucky Department of Veteran Affairs and DBHDID have partnered with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Veterans Integrated Service Network to enhance telemental health services to veterans in rural areas of Kentucky
  • The Administrative Office of the Courts has worked to implement Veterans Treatment Courts in Kentucky. They now exist in Jefferson, Fayette, Hardin and Christian counties
  • The Veterans Trust Fund awarded the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet $120,000 to support VetConnect, which transports veterans to needed services, and $75,000 to the University of Louisville to provide cognitive behavioral counseling for 50 combat veterans of the Kentucky National Guard
  • Additional interagency support and coordinating resources have been provided to veterans through the Hiring Kentucky Heroes program, which has successfully linked thousands of Kentucky veterans to job