Governor Paterson Announces Availability of $30 Million in Grants to Support Behavioral Health Care Services

ALBANY, N.Y. (July 15 , 2010) – Governor David A. Paterson today announced the availability of $30 million in grants to support capital projects that address needs in the delivery of behavioral health services.

"New York State's multi-faceted mental health system serves more than 500,000 individuals each year," said Governor David A. Paterson. "This competitive grant opportunity will promote the mental health of all New Yorkers with a particular focus on providing hope and recovery for adults with serious mental illness and children with serious emotional disturbances."

The funding was approved by the Legislature as part of the state budget and will be administered by the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) as part of the Health Care Efficiency and Affordability Law for New Yorkers (HEAL NY), which focuses on improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the health care system.

Although the behavioral health delivery system has undergone significant changes over the years brought on by new treatment approaches and a shift toward outpatient services, there continues to be a need for high-quality inpatient services. The grants from this initiative will help support capital projects sponsored by hospitals, diagnostic and treatment centers, and mental health clinics that use innovative, evidence-based approaches to improve patient care and outcomes.

New York State Commissioner of Health Richard F. Daines, M.D., said: "Behavioral health care is a particular challenge for providers as New York continues to shift its focus from traditional institutional care toward integrated community based care. Patients who are recovering from mental illness can also have a whole host of medical conditions that are either a result of their mental illness or neglected as a result. This Request for Grant Applications is directed at helping providers to better serve this fragile population."

New York State Commissioner of Mental Health Michael F. Hogan, Ph.D., said: "This announcement fills a key gap in the mental health safety net. Behavioral health care services in some health facilities need these valuable resources to modernize and improve the environment of care. But insurance coverage for these services is often not sufficient to address capital costs. We applaud this initiative."

DASNY President Paul T. Williams said: "DASNY has a longstanding working partnership with health care institutions in New York State as both a public financing and public construction authority. We are proud to continue that service as health care providers in New York State respond to advances in the understanding of the needs of patients with mental illness."

Applications are due August 10. Details of the Request for Grant Applications are posted at www.nyhealth.gov/funding/