Link Round Up: Mar 26 – Apr 1

Link Round Up: Mar 26 – Apr 1

By William JA Pinnock

This week’s Link Round Up is chock full AND jam packed with all kinds of healthcare information. We’ve got news about CHCs, opioid addiction, and new steps to help improve Oregon’s behavioral healthcare.

Wednesday, March 29th, 2017.  Community health center workers (roughly 2,500 of them) began traveling to Washington, D.C. to speak at Congress in order to make a case for extending funding for health centers nationwide because funding is expiring this year. If funding is not provided, this puts an enormous strain on CHCs and could result in many closing, greatly impacting the healthcare of communities. One CHC worker who went to lobby Congress was Brenda Johnson, CEO of La Clinica Health Care (whose Medford clinic is also an OCHIN clinic).  Quote: “We’ll be closing health centers….There are thousands of people who won’t receive care.” Read more about CHCs and Congress here.

It may be an obvious statement, but we need to have more compassion for those struggling with opioid addiction. We need to eradicate the temptation to slap an easy label like “tweaker, junkie, druggie” on an individual and instead of think of them as a human being. We need to examine the system  we live in that exacerbates addiction (from laws to medicine to social programs and everything in between). And we need to look at ourselves and how our actions prop up a system that stigmatizes and punishes those who suffer from this addiction. If this interests you, please read this article from Care2 Healthy Living on opioid addiction and how we can help those who need it.

The Oregon Health Authority on Wednesday released recommendations from the Behavioral Health Collaborative (a 50 member group comprised of health representatives from every aspect of mental health) to improve mental health care in Oregon. “We can and we must treat behavioral health the same way we treat physical health — with compassion, quality care and an understanding that behavioral health needs must be addressed.” Read the Collaborative’s recommendations here.