January 22, 2019

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Open Board of Directors Meeting

Norton Regional Event Center
1601 E. Third St., Suite 138
San Bernardino, CA 92408


Present:   Patti Arlt, Deborah Barmack, Peter Barmack, Ken Coate, Kevin Dyerly, Adam Eventov, Louis Goodwin, Mark Kaenel, Lowell King, P.T. McEwen, John Mirau, Kevin Porter, Dan Murphy, Michael Rivera, Dan Roberts, Kristine Scott, Ray Wolfe and Frank Zapaleta

Guests: Catherine Prichett

Announcements:  1) Members were encouraged to complete and return the Washington, D.C. reservation form by the end of this week.  The advocacy trip will be March 11, 12, & 13, 2019.  2)  Members were reminded to complete their Conflict of Interest forms and return them to staff.  3) Kristine Scott indicated that the Community Resources Center is collecting professional dress shoes for those returning to the workforce.  She will accept donations of both men’s and women’s shoes. 

MSP:  On the recommendations of the Health Care and Legislative Committees, Inland Action supports SB 56 (Roth) which would provide $80m for a new dedicated building to expand the UCR School of Medicine, as well as increase the annual State support for operation of the program from the current $15m to $25m, which will double the allowable enrollment to 500 physicians in training.  Motion passed.    

Lowell King introduced Dr. Veronica Kelley, Director of the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health.  

The Department of Behavioral Health has a contract with the State Department of Health Care Services to provide mental health services to the Medi-Cal population, including adults with a serious and persistent mental illness; children and youth with a serious emotional disturbance; and those who have any issues with addiction.  Of the general population, one in four will experience a serious mental illness issue at some point in their life.  One in five will experience an issue with addiction.

There was a total of 2,118 persons who were homeless as of January 25, 2018, according to the 2018 Point in Time Count.  This is an increase of 13.5% from the 2017 Point in Time Count, as 1,866 persons were counted as homeless at that time.  A comparison of the last two counts reveals that 252 more persons were counted in 2018.  Nearly two‐thirds (64.2%) or 1,360 of the 2,118 homeless adults and children were counted within six cities of San Bernardino County:  Barstow, Ontario, Redlands, San Bernardino, Upland, and Victorville.  These six cities accounted for 60.6% of the total unsheltered population, as well as 72% of persons counted in shelters and transitional housing, including a safe haven program.

Approximately 30% of persons living on streets without a residence have a serious mental illness and approximately 60% have a physical illness.  Most have medical insurance, and many have an addiction disorder.

Veterans represented 10% of the total homeless adult population in 2017 and 9% in 2018.  Youth ages 18 – 24 represented 10.3% of the total homeless adult population in 2017 and 8.2% in 2018.  This is consistent with national estimates of unsheltered homeless youth.  Most homeless youth are runaways resulting from gender identity issues.

The Department of Behavioral Health provided services to 416 unduplicated clients in the homeless programs; 10,814 services or an average of 901 services per month.  The Department strives to be a collaborative partner with other County and community based agencies to leverage resources.  It also partners with IEHP/Molina to provide behavioral healthcare to Medi-Cal beneficiaries and those without insurance in our county.  Within the County structure, it works with the Superior Court, District Attorney, Public Defender, Sheriff’s Department and Probation Department to best serve its clients through a coordinated system.

The Department of Behavioral Health has an annual budget of $446m, primarily from federal funding.  Other grants make up a portion of the budget, as well as $1m provided by the County.  Many private practitioners will not treat Medicaid mental health patients, due to the abysmal low payment rates which are set by regulation and the requirement to bill minute by minute, which requires overly extensive paperwork.  Asked what her top three priorities for reform would be, Dr. Kelley responded:  the provision of adequate funding, reduced requirements for documentation, and change in societal stigma surrounding mental health.

The meeting adjourned at 8:31 a.m.