The Four County ADAMhs Board, Health Partners of Western Ohio and others are working to open a dental clinic that would accept Medicaid patients as well as others, according to ADAMhs Board CEO Les McCaslin. He gave the update at the board’s monthly meeting on Thursday (September 11). Originally, opening a dental clinic somewhere in the four county area was contingent on receiving a federal grant. However, Health Partners, which already operates two federally qualified health clinics in Defiance and Bryan, has secured other funding and is working with a variety of partners to consolidate existing dental services and secure a location that could accommodate a health center that would provide primary care and some behavioral health services along with dental.
McCaslin reported that progress is being made; however, there is no time table when this project will be completed. Currently, the only existing dental clinic in the four county area that accepts Medicaid and maintains regular office hours is operated by the Henry County Health Department in Napoleon. He also noted that very few dentists in the area will accept new Medicaid patients.
ADAMhs Board spending on psychiatric medications for clients who could not afford their medications through Ohio’s central pharmacy during the fiscal year that ended June 30 was nearly $30,000 – about $500,000 less than the amount that the state had allocated. The savings was a result of the ADAMhs Board partnership with Health Partners of Western Ohio and its pharmacy.
McCaslin reported that the director of the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services has allowed the board to reinvest last year’s savings in other services and will do so again this year if the board doesn’t use all of its Central Pharmacy allocation.
The board also heard a report prepared by Pam Pflum, the board’s quality improvement director, noting that the number of suicides committed in Defiance, Fulton, Henry and Williams counties has dropped by nearly half since 2008. Based on death certificate data collected by the county health departments, 21 suicides were recorded in 2008 compared to 11 in 2013.
During that time period, the Four County Suicide Prevention Coalition was started in 2010 and a number of awareness efforts have been undertaken to increase public understanding that depression and other mental illnesses are treatable diseases and that suicide is preventable.
McCaslin reported that Community Hospitals and Wellness Center in Bryan might re-open the Archbold Hospital as a 10-bed mental health facility. He explained that would provide a local option for short-term (up to five days) inpatient psychiatric care. However, he noted that Community Hospitals must secure a number of licensures before the Archbold Hospital can be re-opened.
Since the Fulton Stress Unit closed, the board has signed agreements with Rescue Crisis in Toledo and Arrowhead Behavioral in Maumee for inpatient services. Consequently, the board has access to more beds than before. However, he noted it would be desirable to have a local option instead of sending patients to Toledo.
McCaslin said that the state auditor’s office recently completed its annual audit of the ADAMhs Board. The report had no findings or recommendations.
The ADAMhs Board approved several contracts at Thursday’s meeting, including two contracts with Quadco Rehabilitation Center for employment and vocational services. One is a Title XX contract for $90,000 and the other totals $79,000.
The consolidation of First Call for Help services with Family Services of Northwest Ohio on July 1 resulted in a new contract with Family Services of Northwest Ohio that now totals $1.3 million. The new contract covers both of the agency’s divisions that serve the four county area – Four County Family Center and Comprehensive Crisis Care (formerly First Call for Help). McCaslin noted that the consolidation of services will save the board about $268,000 during the fiscal year.
The board also approved spending $1,700 to support the youth advisory council of Fulton County’s Healthy Choices Caring Communities coalition.
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