Governor Youngkin announces Transformational Behavioral Health Care Plan for Virginians – WHSV

RICHMOND, Va. (WHSV) – Today Governor Glenn Youngkin unveiled his three-year plan to transform Virginia’s behavioral health system, entitled “Right Help, Right Now.” This is a six-pillared approach to address behavioral health challenges, encompassing crisis care, law enforcement burden, substance use disorder support, behavioral health workforce and service delivery innovation.
The current behavioral health system is being overwhelmed and failing to meet the needs of Virginians in crisis with an outdated model of care that relies too heavily on hospitals. Year one of this three-year comprehensive plan invests over $230 million in Virginia’s behavioral health system, which will be proposed in the Governor’s budget amendments on Thursday.
“We are facing a behavioral health crisis across Virginia and the United States. This crisis is present throughout our society, at home, in schools and in the workplace. The three-year ‘Right Help, Right Now’ vision to revolutionize our behavioral health delivery system starts with a giant leap forward offered in my amended budget. It’s crucial that we get this moving, right now,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “We incorporated best-in-class models of behavioral health from across the country. This is a top priority for my administration, and we will not stop until we have a system that delivers the “Right Help, Right Now” to the people who need it most.”
“This is a massive undertaking of the entire behavioral health system and continuum of care. Every Virginian needs to know who to call, who will help and where to go in a crisis, and we are working to rebuild a holistic system that does so,” said Secretary of Health and Human Resources John Littel. “Typically, mental health efforts in the Commonwealth only last one year and target a single area of the problem. We have a multi-year plan that takes on every facet of the system. This is the first time Virginia is doing this.”
Governor Youngkin will propose a series of immediate steps to bolster his three-year transformation plan, including over $230 million in new funding for behavioral health in his upcoming budget on Thursday. The centerpiece of these proposals will include a $20 million proposal to fully-fund 30+ new mobile crisis teams to respond to calls to Virginia’s 9-8-8 hotline. With this new funding, the Governor’s commitment to behavioral health will top $660 million in the next fiscal year.
You can learn more about “Right Help, Right Now.” by clicking here.
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