Focus Area: Providing Access To Healing (PATH)
Several years ago, United Way of Sheboygan County (UWSC) held a community conversation, along with other local partners, to listen and learn about mental health and wellness in the Sheboygan County area. We listened, and we learned. Barriers to care for the population that needs mental health services was identified as a major problem, and the problem has grown since then.
The next action UWSC took was to research and adopt a program to meet the needs of school-aged children seeking brain wellness services. With that, Providing Access to Healing (PATH) was launched in Sheboygan County.
This program offers mental health services to students who are experiencing barriers to care, such as limited financial resources, parent work schedules, lack of reliable transportation, language barriers and lack of parental support. Most students in the program are from families that are either uninsured or under-insured.
PATH is provided in schools because the school provides a safe and accepting environment to make parents and students comfortable, parents don’t need to take time off work for the therapy, and students miss less school time. A school setting can also help “normalize” the mental health program as students access the benefit within their school day schedule. Many high school students in the program are self-referred.
UWSC is now requesting Requests for Proposals from qualified provider organizations to provide expanding services to Sheboygan County students. The provider organization for the Sheboygan County PATH program will be selected through the Request for Proposal (RFP) process. The organization must be:
- Certified by the State of Wisconsin as a qualified mental health and AODA agency or designated as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) receiving grants under Section 330 of the Public Health Services Act
- Demonstrated ability to bill third party payers for services.
The following are the program objectives:
- Improved access to mental health services and increased care for the target population
- Early identification and intervention of mental health issues in students and increased awareness of the need for mental health treatment
- Improved school climate towards mental health issues through staff education and collaboration with mental health providers
- Improved case management of students with mental health issues (therapists, teachers, parent/guardians, etc.)
- Reduced out-of-home placements and alternative school placements
- Improved functioning /reduction of symptoms of students with mental health disorders which results in:
- Reduced barriers to learning
- Improved academic performance
- Improved attendance
- Less disruptive behavior
UWSC will continue to support the program by covering financial gaps for services, measuring program outcomes for success, and identifying opportunities for continuous improvement.
An informational meeting date has been set for provider organization interested in applying for PATH service provision in the Sheboygan County area. This meeting will be held at the UWSC office at 2020 Erie Avenue in Sheboygan on February 15 at 9 a.m. Please RSVP at 920.458.3425.
Questions regarding the RFP process should be addressed to Tom Malmstadt at firstname.lastname@example.org or 920.458.3425.