We asked mental health experts and lawmakers how California and the nation should respond to the public debate triggered by the killing of 26 people at an elementary school last month. Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg has urged the White House to use California's mental health system as a national model.
A new plan to provide mental health and medical coverage in Los Angeles County is taking a holistic approach to dealing with the common "tri-morbidity" -- medical problems, mental illness and addiction. by Stephanie Stephens, California Healthline Regional Correspondent
New guidelines in the Affordable Care Act and new responsibilities for county governments mean significant changes ahead for mental health care and substance abuse treatment in California. by George Lauer, California Healthline Features Editor
Starting with former President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, who set the tone on the first day, mental health care and its role in the evolving health care system emerged as a recurring theme last week at the Association of Health Care Journalists' annual conference in Atlanta. by George Lauer, California Healthline Features Editor
County and community mental health care providers are optimistic about a major overhaul of California's mental health services that includes plans for a new state agency and a realignment of management and funding. by George Lauer, California Healthline Features Editor
An appellate court ruling in favor of a Blue Shield of California policyholder with anorexia could change how health insurers cover mental illness. However, health plans and advocates are divided on the ruling's effects. by Stephanie Stephens, California Healthline Regional Correspondent
Mental health experts say two disparate decisions last week -- the Supreme Court ordering California to reduce its prison population and the state Legislature's decision to improve security at state mental hospitals -- are related to a larger, longstanding problem of chronic underfunding for mental health care in California. by George Lauer, California Healthline Features Editor
Failure to meet state regulations threatens to close Fresno County's only psychiatric crisis center for children and adolescents. County and state officials are hoping to work out a compromise that would allow the center to remain open. by Diana Marcum, California Healthline Regional Correspondent
Cuts in funding for two years running. Redirection of $861 million. Major shift of responsibility away from the state and onto the counties. Can all of that actually result in more efficient and integrated mental health care? by David Gorn, California Healthline Sacramento Bureau
Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal to shift authority and funding for mental health services from Sacramento to the state's 58 counties could be a good thing, mental health advocates say, as long as a consistent flow of money arrives with the new responsibilities. by George Lauer, California Healthline Features Editor
San Francisco continues to grapple with a controversial resolution affecting treatment for severely mentally ill patients. It renews the debate over what to do about a small group of people who find themselves in and out of jails, hospitals and homelessness. by Pat McConahay, California Healthline Regional Correspondent
Health care and government officials in Riverside County want to adjust state reimbursement rates they say are inadequate and creating a crisis in health care access. The county has the second-lowest state reimbursement rate for health care services in California. by Lauren McSherry, California Healthline Regional Correspondent
Much has been made of the May 19 special election in California, and some political analysts have raised questions about what the election results say about voters' willingness to dedicate specific revenue streams to health care programs. Two state lawmakers shared their thoughts on the issue.
Opponents say shifting funds from Proposition 63 programs will undermine mental health programs and cost the state more money in the long run. Supporters of the ballot measure say the money is needed now to help the state avert financial crisis. by George Lauer