General Information

Investment in Mental Health Wellness Act of 2013

The Investment in Mental Health Wellness Act of 2013 establishes a new grant program to disburse funds to California counties for the purpose of developing mental health crisis support programs. Specifically, funds will “increase capacity for client assistance and services in crisis intervention, crisis stabilization, crisis residential treatment, rehabilitative mental health services, and mobile crisis support teams.” The grants from the California Health Facilities Financing Authority (CHFFA) will support capital improvement, expansion and limited start-up costs.  Grants from the Mental Health Services Act Oversight and Accountability Commission will support triage efforts. Counties apply for the grants and their applications are scored on prescribed criteria which includes the identification of key outcomes, some of which relate to hospital emergency department (ED) utilization.

In California there are approximately 12.5 million hospital emergency department (ED) visits annually. Hospitals are required to report each ED visit to the Office of Statewide Planning and Development (OSHPD.) Based on a review of the OSHPD data for years 2006-2011the following reports indicate that between the years of 2006 and 2011, ED visits to California hospitals, by individuals with behavioral health related diagnoses have increased by 47%, compared to the aggregate increase in overall ED volume of 13% during the same time period. Of the +1.8 million growth in total ED volume between 2006 and 2011, over 20% of the growth can be attributed to ED cases that had a behavioral health (BH) related diagnosis.

Attached, you will find a background document on SB 82 and a document listing the recipients of both grants and a their intended uses.

Also attached are four reports based on the analysis of ED encounter visits:

1) California Overview
Contains two exhibits visually depicting the increase utilization of EDs between 2006-2011 for individuals with a behavioral health diagnosis.  Comparable rates for each county are included in the documents below.

2) County Behavioral Health Emergency Department – Summary
This two page report provides the rate of increase in ED volume (population growth adjusted) for both total ED and behavioral health ED visits, as well as the raw number of additional ED visits associated with each. Finally, behavioral health ED visits are expressed as a percent of overall ED growth between 2006 and 2011 (i.e., how much of the growth over this period can be attributed to cases with a BH diagnoses).

3) County Behavioral Health Emergency Department  -  Detail
This two page report provides the detailed numbers that drive the summary. This report does not take into consideration the growth of population in each county during the period (2006 – 2011). As a result, some of the growth in ED use can be attributed to growth in population.

4) County Behavioral Health Emergency Department  – Population Adjusted
This two page report builds upon the previous detail report but adjusts the volume for population differences between 2006 and 2011 (i.e., provides a population adjusted view of ED usage).