Council Connect Articles

Northern Sierra’s New Year Starts with Reflections on Behavioral Health Care  


Behavioral health care, hospital, and county leadership from across California  


With its time for reflection and goal setting, CHA’s annual Behavioral Health Care Symposium on Dec. 12-13 was an ideal prelude to the new year. Representatives from 75 hospitals and 20 counties attended, including many from the Northern Sierra. It is clear from many presentations that the behavioral health landscape in California is entirely different than it was five years ago. There is a heightened sense of urgency among stakeholders, significant legislative action, and funding allocated by the state to address behavioral health care needs through counties and state projects. In the words of one speaker, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, “We have come very far and have very far to go.” 

Many new online programs are becoming available for Californians needing these behavioral health services, and the conduit for those programs will often be county behavioral health departments. Collaborative partnerships that focus on implementation will be essential for the next several years. For hospitals, that will frequently be defined as new or strengthened relationships with their county’s leadership.  

Takeaway/Next Steps

In the Northern Sierra, these efforts to build and strengthen relationships with county behavioral health leaders are underway. Hospital Council will aid in those collaborative efforts wherever there are willing hospital and county partners.