The CEO of Kalamazoo Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services says they currently serve about 5,000 people a year. He says a federal grant should help them serve another 1,000. But Jeff Patton says that won’t meet all of the mental health needs in Kalamazoo County.
25 sites in the country, four of them in Michigan, were recently announced for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics. Patton says that’s significant for the Kalamazoo area. But he says treating mental health is a very complicated process, in part because people often don’t want treatment.
Patton says in addition to expanding treatment, the federal grant, will also require gathering research on evidence-based practices. He says that should also help improve treatment of mental illness and addiction.
Patton says the Kalamazoo area is rich in resources to address mental health. But he says there is a lack of knowledge about the services available. Patton says that’s in part because of the stigma associated with mental illness.