All Texas Access is the project implementation of Senate Bill 633, 86th Legislature, Regular Session, 2019. The intent of the recently passed legislation recognizes rural local mental health authorities and their regional partners are the most skillful to collaboratively decide the best approach to meet their population’s mental health needs.
HHSC will work closely with rural LMHAs to create regional plans to reduce costs to local and state government and improve service delivery.
LMHAs’ Role in All Texas Access
According to the legislation, an LMHA is considered rural if it serves a county with a population of 250,000 or less. HHSC, with input from participating LMHAs, will designate regional groups consisting of at least two LMHAs. These regional groups will work with respective community partners to develop plans to increase the region’s capacity for mental health services. Each plan will address the goals outlined in the legislation of reducing:
- The cost to local governments of providing services to people experiencing a mental health crisis.
- The transportation of people served by an authority in the local mental health group to mental health facilities.
- The incarceration of people with mental illness in county jails in an area served by an authority in the local mental health authority group.
- The number of hospital emergency room visits by people with mental illness at hospitals in an area served by an authority in the local mental health group.
The regional groups will also assess the capacity of its LMHAs to provide access to needed services. This assessment will evaluate:
- If increasing the capacity of regional group LMHAs to provide access to needed services would offset cost to state or local government of:
- Transportation to mental health facilities not local
- Inpatient hospitalizations
- Emergency room services to people with mental illness
- Incarceration in county jails of people with mental illness
- If available state funds or grants could be used to fund each regional group’s plan.
- How each regional group plan aligns with the Statewide Behavioral Health Strategic Plan and the Comprehensive Inpatient Mental Health Plan.
HHSC's Role in All Texas Access
HHSC will provide logistical and facilitation support to the regional groups in creating respective regional plans. HHSC will compile a final report that includes the completed regional plans. The report will assess the cost-effectiveness of each plan and how each plan improves the delivery of behavioral health services to the region. The report will also include a comprehensive statewide analysis of mental health services in counties with a population of 250,000 or less, including recommendations to the legislature for implementing the plans.
LMHAs will partner with community stakeholders interested in participating in any regional plan. This can include county jails, hospitals, people who have had a mental illness and their families, public health officials and community leaders. Each regional group will have its own unique approach to planning and will include a unique mix of stakeholders.
A timeline will be published as the project is initiated and progresses.
Contact the HHSC team by emailing AllTexasAccess@hhsc.state.tx.us