Mental Health Care Choice: The community feedback period for this project began on 1/17/2019 and will end on 3/18/2019

What is the problem that needs to be addressed? Please describe how it is related to mental health.
Keeping your doctor / keeping your care team. Mental health consumers in the County Behavioral Health system must comply with the Short-Doyle Act from 1957. Over the past 62 years, healthcare has changed quite significantly. In current time, compliance with Short-Doyle means avoiding employment that provides health insurance, avoiding employment that makes $48,000 or more annually, and feeling like a worthless drag on society with restricted freedom. Based upon these requirements, the financial consequences include the necessity to obtain food stamps, SSI/SSDI, Housing Assistance, Transportation Assistance, etc. Freedom doesn’t need to be restricted in this way.

Why is this a concern for Orange County? What can Orange County and other counties learn from this project?
It is assumed that Orange County and its residents prefer having more freedoms over having less freedoms. It is assumed that Orange County and its residents want to see people experiencing mental illness perform to the best of their ability, unrestricted by public policy that forces unnecessary choices to underperform.

What is currently being done to resolve this problem in our county and throughout the United States? If applicable: Is it working; why or why not?
It is assumed that Orange County is compliant with Short-Doyle. To the best of my knowledge, OC doesn’t publish vital development statistics for people experiencing mental illness. Therefore it is difficult to measure how Short-Doyle, in present form, may be restricting economic activity. As for the rest of the United States, the Federalist system provides choice over 104+ medical jurisdictions that each have their own policies and procedures. Summarizing 104+ medical jurisdictions is beyond the scope of this form.

 What is new or different about this project idea? Please describe how this differs from what is already being done (Question 6). Please list any research that was done on this topic.
Asking for more freedom in a mental health setting isn’t innovative. Typically this is done through a lawsuit such as Souder v Brennan. Giving consumers the ability to ask for policy change in a pro-active/constructive manner is innovative. Allowing consumers to tailor their mental health system in ways that encourage economic development/achievement is innovative.

What is the project idea? Please describe how this project will operate.
The project idea is to provide consumers who want to keep their care team with waivers from Short-Doyle requirements on a case by case basis. The additional upside of this is that Orange County can collect data with an intend to treat analysis. Consumers “lost to follow up” would possibly be reduced. This can encourage Orange County to share its mental health outcomes in publications, journals and abstracts.

Additional Information:



January 3, 2019

1 comment

Thank you for your submission.

This idea seems to be a system wide change that is primarily outside of the scope of Innovation projects since the requirements are set by the state. Any changes could take much longer than the 5 years allowed by Innovation funding. Given this limited time frame, what would be the learning objectives for this effort and how would the success of this effort be measured?

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