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Counties and the American Rescue Plan Act Recovery Fund: Behavioral Health

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    Counties and the American Rescue Plan Act Recovery Fund: Behavioral Health

    THE RECOVERY FUND AND BEHAVIORAL HEALTH

    The Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund (Recovery Fund), part of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which NACo helped to develop and strongly advocated to pass, allocates $65.1 billion. These funds provide direct, flexible aid for every county, parish and borough in America. Counties are on the front lines in delivering this aid to residents and are a driving force connecting communities and strengthening the economy.

    As directed by the ARPA and the U.S. Department of Treasury, counties can invest Recovery Funds into a broad range of programs, services and projects under five categories to: support the public health response; address negative economic impacts caused by COVID-19; replace lost revenue; provide premium pay to essential workers; and invest in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure.

    Since the enactment of the ARPA, America’s counties have been working hard to develop Recovery Fund implementation plans that will help spur an equitable economic recovery across the nation. As sound financial stewards, counties are investing these critical Recovery Funds to ensure the health and well-being of our nation’s residents and the economic vitality of our local communities. Many counties are in the preliminary stages of development and implementation of our Recovery Fund Plans. This report highlights county investments such as psychiatric care services, substance use disorder support and mental health outreach teams.

    COUNTIES USING RECOVERY FUND DOLLARS TO INVEST IN MENTAL HEALTH

    Across the nation, counties are addressing key mental health priorities. In 2018, over 53 percent of counties had less than one mental health provider per 1,400 residents. The Recovery Fund provides counties with the opportunity to strengthen this critical workforce.

    View in Fullscreen

    COUNTIES ARE INVESTING RECOVERY FUNDS TO:

    COUNTIES ARE PRIORITIZING COMPREHENSIVE BEHAVIORAL HEALTH SERVICES

    How are counties investing the funds? NACo analysis of 200 county ARPA Recovery Fund plans reveals county-designed investments in the community across key areas of need. These local priorities are found within county plans at the rate displayed in the chart, e.g. 79 percent of county plans include investments in health programs. The darker bars are the investment categories adjacent to behavioral and mental health that support the continuation and expansion of services in counties. The examples in this report further illustrate the allocations to support these health measures on the local level.

    Note: NACo analysis of 200 county Recovery Plan Performance Reports from counties with a population of 250,000 and above, as required by the U.S. Department of Treasury. Analysis is as of Nov. 19, 2021. While the bar chart sources Recovery Plans, the narrative examples in this report draw from a variety of resources including the Recovery Plans, press releases and other official documents.

    BERNALILLO COUNTY, N.M.

    Bernalillo County is helping young adults manage their health by providing substance abuse treatment and services through a $2.5 million investment in the Young Adult Inpatient Substance Abuse Program. The program is tailored to the needs of a younger population and supports their recovery journey. Another $2.25 million will go towards the Outpatient Clinic to hire peer recovery specialists that will help address co-occurring disorders. These allocations are intended to support the behavioral health needs the county experienced during the pandemic.

    COCHISE COUNTY, ARIZ.

    Cochise County is addressing mental health concerns by partnering with the Chiricahua Community Health Center to establish a psychiatry department which will provide accessible mental health services to all county residents. The clinic will utilize Recovery Funds to expand mental health programs, provide counseling and supply case management services. This clinic is an important step in addressing mental health issues in the community that have been exacerbated by COVID-19.

    DELAWARE COUNTY, IND.

    Delaware County is supporting the well-being of its residents through a $1.5 million allocation towards mental health assistance and rehabilitation treatments. The county will partner with the City of Muncie to build out the rehabilitation center at the Justice Center and support other mental health projects to help residents cope with the increased stress and burdens they have encountered during the pandemic.

    KNOX COUNTY, TENN.

    Knox County is providing pediatric behavioral health interventions through a $625,000 allocation of Recovery Funds. The county will partner with Childhelp Tennessee Clinical Services to help expand community-based approaches and provide 85 children with approximately 4,100 annual therapy sessions. Childhelp is the only organizaation in the county that provides trauma-informed care, and has experienced an increase in need during the pandemic.

    LANCASTER COUNTY, NEB.

    Lancaster County will support non-profit capacity by allocating $4.4 million for mental health projects. The initiative will create beds for community non-profits that address adult crisis stabilization and psychiatric residential rehabilitation. Currently, only one community-based hospital in the county provides these services, which has been strained throughout the pandemic. The Recovery Funds will help the county expand the level of care and support for residents.

    LOUISVILLE/JEFFERSON COUNTY METRO, KY.

    The Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government is supporting at-risk populations by investing Recovery Funds in suicide prevention initiatives to decrease mental health impacts on the community in the wake of COVID-19. The county will conduct a comprehensive needs assessment of existing suicide prevention infrastructure, develop a community communication campaign and integrate initiatives into a countywide mental health plan. The county is also allocating $1.2 million for a substance use disorder project which will fund additional overdose prevention, expand treatment support and create a supportive service hub for residents.

    NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C.

    New Hanover County is helping residents who were most impacted by social isolation during the pandemic connect to mental health services. The county will utilize $2.1 million in Recovery Funds to ensure each public school has a mental health counselor and $332,000 to help establish a mobile health outreach team at the Senior Resource Center. These investments support key needs in the county as residents continue to recover from the negative impacts of COVID-19.

    PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY, MD.

    Prince George’s County is providing comprehensive behavioral health services through a $11.54 million allocation of Recovery Funds. Programs will provide additional behavioral health services to more than 400 households, support 250 incarcerated individuals with the jail-based behavioral health IT system, increase public awareness of services and develop a pediatrics home visiting program. All these services will help address the negative impacts of COVID-19 on resident health.

    SAN DIEGO COUNTY, CALIF.

    San Diego County will help vulnerable residents access mental health services through a $23 million allocation in Recovery Funds. Programs will specifically focus on youth, homebound individuals and recipients of In-Home Supportive Services. The county will also partner with schools and community members to increase identification and referral of youth to different levels of mental health support and treatment, with the final goal to implement universal behavioral health screenings for all students.

    SUFFOLK COUNTY & CITY OF BOSTON, MASS.

    Suffolk County & the City of Boston are targeting at-risk individuals through a $2 million investment in mental health services including the creation and implementation of a Local Outreach to Suicide Survivor Team. The county has also set aside $4 million for expanded substance use services, wraparound services and harm reduction that will address ongoing mental health needs of residents during the pandemic.

    TRAVIS COUNTY, TEXAS

    Travis County has committed Recovery Funds to develop a comprehensive method of tackling the interconnected issues of mental health, substance use disorders and unhoused persons that were heightened during the pandemic. The county has also allocated $325,000 for targeted behavioral health support including case management and clinical support for people experiencing homelessness.

    VOLUSIA COUNTY, FLA.

    Volusia County will help support the significant transition to telehealth services across the county with the help of a $2.5 million investment in Recovery Funds. The funding will also support substance abuse treatment and services across the county given the increased demand for behavioral health programs and providers during the pandemic.

    Across the nation, counties are addressing key mental health priorities. In 2018, over 53 percent of counties had less than one mental health provider per 1,400 residents. The Recovery Fund provides counties with the opportunity to strengthen this critical workforce.
    2022-02-28
    Reports & Toolkits
    2022-07-18

THE RECOVERY FUND AND BEHAVIORAL HEALTH

The Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund (Recovery Fund), part of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which NACo helped to develop and strongly advocated to pass, allocates $65.1 billion. These funds provide direct, flexible aid for every county, parish and borough in America. Counties are on the front lines in delivering this aid to residents and are a driving force connecting communities and strengthening the economy.

As directed by the ARPA and the U.S. Department of Treasury, counties can invest Recovery Funds into a broad range of programs, services and projects under five categories to: support the public health response; address negative economic impacts caused by COVID-19; replace lost revenue; provide premium pay to essential workers; and invest in water, sewer and broadband infrastructure.

Since the enactment of the ARPA, America’s counties have been working hard to develop Recovery Fund implementation plans that will help spur an equitable economic recovery across the nation. As sound financial stewards, counties are investing these critical Recovery Funds to ensure the health and well-being of our nation’s residents and the economic vitality of our local communities. Many counties are in the preliminary stages of development and implementation of our Recovery Fund Plans. This report highlights county investments such as psychiatric care services, substance use disorder support and mental health outreach teams.

COUNTIES USING RECOVERY FUND DOLLARS TO INVEST IN MENTAL HEALTH

Across the nation, counties are addressing key mental health priorities. In 2018, over 53 percent of counties had less than one mental health provider per 1,400 residents. The Recovery Fund provides counties with the opportunity to strengthen this critical workforce.

View in Fullscreen

COUNTIES ARE INVESTING RECOVERY FUNDS TO:

COUNTIES ARE PRIORITIZING COMPREHENSIVE BEHAVIORAL HEALTH SERVICES

How are counties investing the funds? NACo analysis of 200 county ARPA Recovery Fund plans reveals county-designed investments in the community across key areas of need. These local priorities are found within county plans at the rate displayed in the chart, e.g. 79 percent of county plans include investments in health programs. The darker bars are the investment categories adjacent to behavioral and mental health that support the continuation and expansion of services in counties. The examples in this report further illustrate the allocations to support these health measures on the local level.

Note: NACo analysis of 200 county Recovery Plan Performance Reports from counties with a population of 250,000 and above, as required by the U.S. Department of Treasury. Analysis is as of Nov. 19, 2021. While the bar chart sources Recovery Plans, the narrative examples in this report draw from a variety of resources including the Recovery Plans, press releases and other official documents.

BERNALILLO COUNTY, N.M.

Bernalillo County is helping young adults manage their health by providing substance abuse treatment and services through a $2.5 million investment in the Young Adult Inpatient Substance Abuse Program. The program is tailored to the needs of a younger population and supports their recovery journey. Another $2.25 million will go towards the Outpatient Clinic to hire peer recovery specialists that will help address co-occurring disorders. These allocations are intended to support the behavioral health needs the county experienced during the pandemic.

COCHISE COUNTY, ARIZ.

Cochise County is addressing mental health concerns by partnering with the Chiricahua Community Health Center to establish a psychiatry department which will provide accessible mental health services to all county residents. The clinic will utilize Recovery Funds to expand mental health programs, provide counseling and supply case management services. This clinic is an important step in addressing mental health issues in the community that have been exacerbated by COVID-19.

DELAWARE COUNTY, IND.

Delaware County is supporting the well-being of its residents through a $1.5 million allocation towards mental health assistance and rehabilitation treatments. The county will partner with the City of Muncie to build out the rehabilitation center at the Justice Center and support other mental health projects to help residents cope with the increased stress and burdens they have encountered during the pandemic.

KNOX COUNTY, TENN.

Knox County is providing pediatric behavioral health interventions through a $625,000 allocation of Recovery Funds. The county will partner with Childhelp Tennessee Clinical Services to help expand community-based approaches and provide 85 children with approximately 4,100 annual therapy sessions. Childhelp is the only organizaation in the county that provides trauma-informed care, and has experienced an increase in need during the pandemic.

LANCASTER COUNTY, NEB.

Lancaster County will support non-profit capacity by allocating $4.4 million for mental health projects. The initiative will create beds for community non-profits that address adult crisis stabilization and psychiatric residential rehabilitation. Currently, only one community-based hospital in the county provides these services, which has been strained throughout the pandemic. The Recovery Funds will help the county expand the level of care and support for residents.

LOUISVILLE/JEFFERSON COUNTY METRO, KY.

The Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government is supporting at-risk populations by investing Recovery Funds in suicide prevention initiatives to decrease mental health impacts on the community in the wake of COVID-19. The county will conduct a comprehensive needs assessment of existing suicide prevention infrastructure, develop a community communication campaign and integrate initiatives into a countywide mental health plan. The county is also allocating $1.2 million for a substance use disorder project which will fund additional overdose prevention, expand treatment support and create a supportive service hub for residents.

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C.

New Hanover County is helping residents who were most impacted by social isolation during the pandemic connect to mental health services. The county will utilize $2.1 million in Recovery Funds to ensure each public school has a mental health counselor and $332,000 to help establish a mobile health outreach team at the Senior Resource Center. These investments support key needs in the county as residents continue to recover from the negative impacts of COVID-19.

PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY, MD.

Prince George’s County is providing comprehensive behavioral health services through a $11.54 million allocation of Recovery Funds. Programs will provide additional behavioral health services to more than 400 households, support 250 incarcerated individuals with the jail-based behavioral health IT system, increase public awareness of services and develop a pediatrics home visiting program. All these services will help address the negative impacts of COVID-19 on resident health.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, CALIF.

San Diego County will help vulnerable residents access mental health services through a $23 million allocation in Recovery Funds. Programs will specifically focus on youth, homebound individuals and recipients of In-Home Supportive Services. The county will also partner with schools and community members to increase identification and referral of youth to different levels of mental health support and treatment, with the final goal to implement universal behavioral health screenings for all students.

SUFFOLK COUNTY & CITY OF BOSTON, MASS.

Suffolk County & the City of Boston are targeting at-risk individuals through a $2 million investment in mental health services including the creation and implementation of a Local Outreach to Suicide Survivor Team. The county has also set aside $4 million for expanded substance use services, wraparound services and harm reduction that will address ongoing mental health needs of residents during the pandemic.

TRAVIS COUNTY, TEXAS

Travis County has committed Recovery Funds to develop a comprehensive method of tackling the interconnected issues of mental health, substance use disorders and unhoused persons that were heightened during the pandemic. The county has also allocated $325,000 for targeted behavioral health support including case management and clinical support for people experiencing homelessness.

VOLUSIA COUNTY, FLA.

Volusia County will help support the significant transition to telehealth services across the county with the help of a $2.5 million investment in Recovery Funds. The funding will also support substance abuse treatment and services across the county given the increased demand for behavioral health programs and providers during the pandemic.

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About Sarah Edwards (Full Bio)

Research Associate

Sarah is a research associate in the Counties Futures Lab. She is responsible for analyzing economic, demographic and other county level datasets for NACo’s County Explorer. Before joining NACo, Sarah worked as a graduate research assistant with the Metropolitan Policy Center.

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