Care Plus NJ (CPNJ) has been incorporated as a CMHC since 1978, and will increase access to outpatient services in greater Bergen County, NJ through this program. This specifically includes restoring and expanding the delivery of clinical services impacted by the pandemic, supporting outreach and engaging historically excluded populations, and ensuring that staff providing services have access to wellness-focused supports.
A 2018 Kaiser Family Foundation report found that 35% of adults in NJ with a serious mental illness did not receive treatment (KFF, 2018). The number of people experiencing a mental or behavioral health condition since the onset of the pandemic has doubled since 2019 averages (CDC, 2020), creating long wait lists and limiting access to treatment. CMHC capacity will ensure that at least 500 unduplicated individuals are served annually. CPNJ's will implement trauma-informed, evidence-based, and strengths-based approaches to mitigate the emotional impact of the pandemic. A multi-disciplinary team of professionals will support meeting the demand for outpatient clinical treatment, case management, and support services. The CMHC program will also address the specific needs of historically excluded (ie "minority") populations that have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. This will be achieved through outreach and education on barriers to engagement and retention in treatment (such as implicit bias, microaggressions, and cultural humility methods). The CMHC program will also provide staff wellness activities to better equip them to respond to individuals with complex mental health needs.
Goal 1: Increase outpatient treatment capacity to respond to the increased demand for services for individuals with SED, SMI, and COD by October 2023. Objectives: 1.1: Achieve a 100% reduction in wait list time by enhancing service access via telehealth and in-person capacity as captured in electronic health record reports and represented by eliminating the wait list. 1.2: Engage a minimum of 1000 unduplicated (500 per year) individuals into EBP-driven treatment and support services. 1.3: Promote 40 staff wellness activities with over 1,000 staff participating. 1.4: 75% of staff participating in wellness activities will report improved well-being as measured by pre and posttest surveys. Goal 2: Increase service engagement of historically excluded populations as measured by attendance records. 2.2: Conduct 50 targeted outreach initiatives to community stakeholders to address stigma and increase awareness of services as documented in program records. 2.3: By October 1, 2022, 90% of the CPNJ treatment workforce will be trained on cultural humility practices.