Celebrate National Recovery Month

WebBannerRectangleEach September Pawnee Mental Health takes time to celebrate National Recovery Month. This year’s theme, “Join the Voices of Recovery: Speak Up, Reach Out,” encourages people to discuss mental health and substance use disorders and the reality that recovery is possible. It also aims to foster public understanding and acceptance about mental heath, substance use, and recovery.

In 2012, 65.9 million people in the United States were diagnosed with a mental health or substance issue. People in recovery are all around us.  They are full contributors to our community, participating in business, volunteering, and providing for their families.  To promote an even more accepting environment, where people feel free to join others on their path of recovery, we must reach out to them or speak up for their cause.  We need to recognize that mental and/or substance use disorders can be treated, just like other health problems, such as diabetes and hypertension.  We can work together to improve the overall health of our community by supporting behavioral health.

As we celebrate National Recovery Month, it is important to recognize that most people in recovery find that treatment is effective in reducing their symptoms. Treatment providers at Pawnee Mental Health have witnessed the positive reality of recovery in people’s lives as they achieve improved mental and physical health, and form stronger relationships with their family members, neighbors, and peers.

In the spirit of Recovery Month please join me in taking time to support and celebrate those people in our lives who are going through recovery. Let’s also take time to remember that people with mental health or substance issues can get better, and that they need the support of a welcoming community – one that speaks up for their cause and reaches out to lend a hand!

Adam McCaffrey LSCSW, LAC, MA
Director of Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Services


September 4, 2014

For the last 25 years, communities and individuals across the country have joined together in September to observe National Recovery Month and celebrate the journey and achievements of the millions of Americans who are in recovery from a substance use or mental health condition.

Recovery Month promotes the societal benefits of prevention, treatment, and recovery for substance use and mental health disorders; celebrates people in recovery; recognizes the contributions of treatment and service providers; and promotes the message that recovery in all its forms is possible.

At a White House press release to kick off Recovery Month activities, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) released the latest estimates and a summary infographic displaying the prevalence of mental health and substance use disorders in the United States. In the past year, nearly 1 in 12 American adults had a substance use disorder and 1 in 5 had a mental illness – with 10 million adults experiencing a severe mental illness and 7.7 million experiencing a co-occurring substance use and mental health condition.

Through community events, media outreach, and more, Recovery Month spreads the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, that prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can and do recover. SAMHSA has made several resources available on its website to support Recovery Month activities:

Community Events: Holding an event can be a fun and important way to make a difference in your community. Learn more and find an event near you.

Recovery Month 2014 Toolkit: SAMHSA created the Recovery Month toolkit to increase awareness of the power of recovery. The kit provides individuals and organizations with the resources they need to help people with mental and/or substance use disorders. The toolkit contains 4 sections: targeted outreach, media outreach, resources, and “join the voices for recovery.”

Visit SAMHSA’s Recovery Month website to learn more, connect on social media, send a Recovery Month e-card, share your story of recovery, and more.

Rebecca Farley Director, Policy & Advocacy, National Council for Behavioral Health

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September 8-14 is National Suicide Prevention Week

Robbin Cole, Executive Director

Robbin Cole, Executive Director

The August 11 death of comedian Robin Williams elicited a world-wide response of shock and disbelief that someone who brought so much laughter to the world for so many years could have been so tormented that he would choose to end his life rather than endure another day.

The media swarmed. Many mourned. Some judged.  The untimely death of a celebrity, especially someone so well known for his power to find light in the darkness, drew attention to the issue of suicide, mental health and substance use disorders.

September 8-14 is National Suicide Prevention Week.  September 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day.  It is estimated that over 800,000 people die of suicide worldwide each year.  39,518 people died of suicide in the United States in 2011, making suicide the 10th leading cause of death in our nation.

Kansas statistics mirror national numbers.  Five hundred and five (505) Kansans died of suicide in 2012.  This is 121 more people than died of suicide in Kansas in 2011, making suicide the 10th leading cause of death in our state.

It is estimated that at least six additional people are personally affected each time someone dies of suicide, averaging over 200,000 people annually.  The term “survivor of suicide” is used to describe a person who has lost someone close to them to suicide.  The grief that follows the suicide of someone close to a survivor of suicide can be intense, complex and long term.  Help is available to survivors of suicide.  The American Association of Suicidology offers a variety of resources and programs at www.suicidology.org  or 1-202-237-2280.

Mental illness is generally associated with higher rates of suicide.  It is estimated that more than 90% of all people who die of suicide have a significant mental illness at the time of their death.  These illnesses are often undiagnosed, untreated or both.  When both substance use and mental disorders are present, the risk for suicide is even greater.

Suicide is a public health concern.  Suicide prevention should be a priority.  The place to start is with reducing the stigma associated with receiving treatment for mental health and substance use disorders.  Mental illnesses and substance use disorders are treatable and suicide is preventable.

So that not one more person dies of suicide because they were unable to find light in the darkness, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or Pawnee Mental Health Services at 1-785-587-4300 (Manhattan) or 1-800-609-2002. Hope is waiting. Help is here.

Robbin Cole
Executive Director
Pawnee Mental Health Services


Pawnee Awarded Funding

Good News Note (2)The Caroline Peine Charitable Foundation/Manhattan Foundation, Bank of America, Trustee, awarded a $100,000 grant to Pawnee Mental Health Services.

Grant funding will be used to improve Pawnee’s Information Technology (IT) infrastructure.  Improvements to the infrastructure will provide the speed and functionality needed to support the delivery, coordination, and documentation of services provided to the citizens of the City of Manhattan, while meeting the current and future expectations of federal health care reform regulations.

“We are grateful to the Caroline Peine Foundation for this incredibly generous gift which allows us to make the kind of critical improvements to our IT infrastructure which are necessary to support the delivery of essential community mental health services” said Robbin Cole, Executive Director.

Recovery Month Kickoff Webcast

WebBannerRectangleOn Thursday, September 4th, the Entertainment Industries Council (EIC) will host a live webcast from The Recovery Month Kickoff Luncheon in Washington, D.C. The annual Recovery Month Luncheon recognizes the hard work by those in the recovery community across the country in providing services and spreading the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, that prevention works, treatment is effective and people can and do recover.

NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, Young People in Recovery (YPR), and the Association of Recovery Schools (ARS), along with the official Recovery Month partner, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), are pleased to have you join us for the 25th Anniversary Recovery Month Kickoff Luncheon, and video trilogy launch, Looking Back at Addiction, Looking Forward to Recovery. Last year was the first year a webcast was done for the event and it reached 10 times the number of people with the speaker’s powerful messages of treatment and recovery. Join us to make this year reach an even wider audience.

Watch the Webcast LIVE from Washington D.C. here at 12:00pm EST (11:00am CST) on Thursday, September 4th.

Don’t forget to join the conversation on Twitter! Follow @EIC_Online and use #RecoveryMonth

Visit Us Online! wwweiconline.org or www.eicnetwork.tv

Tune in to 1350am KMAN radio on Thursday, August 28 at 9:30 a.m.

McCaffery, Adam 20130306 (2)Adam McCaffrey, Director of Pawnee’s Therapy and Recovery Services will be live on 1350am KMAN radio on Thursday, August 28 at 9:30 a.m.  He will join Cathy Dawes during InFocus.  They will talk about National Recovery Month and a guest speaker will talk about her recovery journey.



Health Connect Program Manager Named

AMasonAshley Mason, has been named the Program Manager for Health Connect, the new Health Home Program of Pawnee Mental Health Services.  Health Homes are a program of the Kansas Medicaid program which provides coordinated physical and behavioral health care for eligible KanCare consumers.

Health Connect will provide comprehensive and intense care coordination for people with complex chronic conditions, like diabetes, asthma, or serious mental illness.  The goal of Health Connect is to improve consumer care and health outcomes, lower Medicaid costs, and reduce preventable hospitalization and emergency room visits.

Ms. Mason has a bachelor’s degree from Baker University in Music Education (B.M.E.) and a Master’s degree in Music (M.M.) from Kansas State University.  She is a Certified Health Insurance Marketplace Navigator for the Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved (KAMU).  She is certified as a case manager and is certified in Mental Health First Aid.  Ms. Mason is a part-time Master of Social Work student at the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare. She has been employed with Pawnee since 2010.

To learn more about the Health Connect program or to schedule an appointment call 785-587-4350 in Manhattan or 844-200-2023 outside of Manhattan.