MHSA News & Announcements Archive: 2013

Current MHSA News & Announcements

MHSA News & Announcements Archive: 2010-2012


December 19, 2013

Request for Comment On New Chapter 416, Subchapter B concerning Home and Community-Based Services - Adult Mental Health Program

Comments Due: January 13, 2014

The proposed rules governing requirements for Home and Community-based Services – Adult Mental Health  were published for formal comment in the December 13, 2013, issue of the Texas Register

  • To access the html version, go to the Secretary of State’s website at:
  • To access the preview of the proposed rules, find the “Points of Interest” box that is located on the right side of the home page and complete the following steps.
    1. Click on “Search the Texas Register. ”
    2. Locate “title number” on the Viewer Screen, and type the number "25" in the box.
    3. Locate “chapter number,” and type the number "416" in the box.
    4. Locate “rule numbers,” and type the numbers "51" to "58" in the boxes provided.
    5. Enter the date, "December 13, 2013", in the first box located at Publication Issue Date.
    6. Click on "find" and the publication data will be available.
  • Click on each section to access the rule text, the "preamble" explains changes to the rule, and the text of the sections being repealed.

Proposed Language - New Chapter 416, Subchapter B (PDF)

You may submit your comments to: Please title the subject line “Comments for 25 TAC 416 B.”  Comments should include the citation for the section that you are referencing, suggestions for alternative language, and a rationale for the alternative language.

December 16, 2013

Veterans Mental Health Grant Request for Applications

Applications due by 4 PM CST on January 9, 2014

A joint grants program by the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Veterans Commission (TVC) has posted a new Veterans Mental Health Grant request for applications (RFA). It can be accessed at:

The purpose of the RFA is to seek applications from eligible applicants for grants to address the mental health needs of Veterans and their families. The amount available for this 1-year grant is $1,500,000. Applicants can request a grant from $5,000 to $500,000.

Grant projects funded under the Veterans Mental Health Grants program should emphasize direct services to Veterans and their families and may include:

  • Peer sessions, groups sessions, Veteran family member counseling, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) services, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) services, equine therapy, co-occurring diagnosis counseling, and other types of counseling;
  • Veteran Drop-In Centers, locations operated by Eligible Applicants, which includes staffing by Veterans, for Veterans and their families where they are comfortable interacting with their peers to learn about accessing resources and services for their benefit.

The number of awards made is dependent on the grant amounts awarded.

Applications must be received by January 9, 2014 by 4 p.m. at the FVA office in Austin, Texas to be considered for funding.

Please visit the Upcoming Trainings and Events page to learn more about the RFA process and to a recording of the informational Webinar held on December 11 at

December 9, 2013

Request for Information (RFI) on Proposed Behavioral Health Services Draft Request for Proposal [RFI#537-14-004]

Issued: December 9, 2013 — Comments Due: 3:00 PM Central Standard Time on December 20, 2013

The Department of State Health Services (DSHS or Department), NorthSTAR (Program), announces the expected availability of fiscal year (FY) 2016 Medicaid and non-Medicaid funding to provide mental health and substance use disorder services through a managed care network to eligible youth and adults residing in Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Hunt, Kaufman, Navarro and Rockwall counties (Project).  

This RFI will be used as a research and information gathering tool for preparation of the competitive solicitation. No contracts will be issued as a result of this RFI; however, awards will be made as a result of the future RFP.  Do NOT submit a proposal based on this RFI.

Please submit written comments and questions via email using the format and guidelines outlined in Package 1. Comments are due by 3:00 PM Central Standard Time on December 20, 2013.

The RFI and all supporting documents may be found at


December 3, 2013

For Comment: Draft of Initial Plan for the Appropriate and Timely Provision of Mental Health Services - House Bill 3793

Comments are due by 5 PM CST on December 12, 2013

House Bill 3793 (83rd Regular Legislative Session) ("HB 3793") directs the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) to develop a plan to ensure the appropriate and timely provision of mental health services and to allocate mental health outpatient and hospital resources for the forensic and civil/voluntary populations.  This initial plan incorporates the elements required by the legislation:  needs, access and availability of services, and allocation of resources, with a separate section addressing issues related to the forensic population.  The plan reflects the input and priorities of the HB 3793 Advisory Panel

The framework reflected in this initial plan will be developed as DSHS works with the HB 3793 Advisory Panel to develop standards and methodologies for implementation.  The work to be done includes completing a needs assessment and developing recommendations to address identified needs and barriers, including potential statutory changes. This information will be included in the report DSHS will submit to the legislature and the governor in December 2014.

Below is the draft of the initial plan which is being provided to obtain informal comment.  Please submit your comments via email to with the phrase “HB 3793 – Initial Plan - Informal Comment” in the subject line or by U.S. mail to Tamra Boyd, Department of State Health Services, P.O. Box149347, Mail Code 2023, Austin, TX 78714 by close of business on December 12, 2013.  Please call Tamra Boyd with questions or concerns at 512-206-5056.

November 20, 2013

Conference Call: Community Collaborative Projects

Thursday, November 21 at 3 PM CST

The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) will be hosting a brief conference call to call attention to upcoming Community Collaborative Projects made possible by Senate Bill 58, Chapter 539 of the 83rd regular legislature. Per the Bill, these funds will enhance or expand collaborative services to persons experiencing homelessness and mental illness in the five most populous municipalities in the state.

Thursday, November 21 at 3 PM

Conference Call number: 1-877-820-7831

Participant Code: 217742


DSHS was allocated approximately $6.9 million FY 2014 and $16.5 million in FY 2015 to implement these Collaborative Projects. The statute states each grantee is required to “provide evidence of significant coordination and collaboration between the entity, local mental health authorities, municipalities, and other community stakeholders in establishing or expanding a community collaborative…”.   Therefore, City and County participation is very important part of the project.   

DSHS is hosting this call to ensure that communities targeted by this legislation are aware of this opportunity.   We would highly encourage your participation in local efforts underway.

DSHS collected feedback regarding the upcoming procurement through an RFI.   The final RFP Document may reflect changes as a result of this process and should be reviewed carefully when it is posted.  Due to procurement law, we are unable to discuss many details about this exciting new project.  However, once the RFP is released and publically posted, there will be a mechanism for submitting questions.

Available Resources

Senate Bill 58   

The Texas Legislature Online (

RFI for Community Collaborative Projects   

The Comptroller website


October 29, 2013

Request for Comments: Chapter 415, Subchapter F - Interventions in Mental Health Programs

Comments Due November 18, 2013

The draft preamble and draft rule text below are regarding interventions in mental health programs, and are being provided to obtain informal comment. Significant changes to the rules result from legislation (Senate Bill 325 (2005) and Senate Bill 1842 (2013)); changes in the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Conditions of Participation; and comments received during the stakeholder meeting held in 2007. The draft preamble, Section by Section Summary, describes the changes to the current rules and provides reasoned justification for the changes. Please note that on Page 2 of the Preamble, Section by Section Summary, second paragraph, the term "COP" refers to the term "conditions of participation."

A workgroup comprised of internal and external stakeholders suggested a number of revisions to the rule. However, to implement provisions of Senate Bill 1842 in a timely manner, the department decided to temporarily forego many of the revisions suggest by the workgroup because many of those revisions will require considerable time to negotiate between the various stakeholders. A workgroup will be reassembled to address broader revisions to these rules subsequent to the adoption of the attached rules.

Please submit your comments via email to with the phrase “Interventions (415-F), 10-28-13, Informal Comments” in the subject line or by US mail to Janet Fletcher, Department of State Health Services, P.O. Box149347, Mail Code 2018, Austin, TX 78714. Call Janet Fletcher with questions or concerns at 512-206-5044.

  • October 4, 2013

    Sunset Review of the Texas Department of State Health Services

    The mission and performance of the Texas Department of State Health Services are under review by the Legislature as required under the Texas Sunset Act.  Through the Sunset review, every Texan has the opportunity to suggest ways in which the mission and operations of the Department of State Health Services can be strengthened.  See the Sunset Review Announcement below for more information. The Sunset Advisory Commission requests submissions be sent by December 16, 2013.

    Sunset Review Announcement (pdf)

    As a part of this process, DSHS has also submitted its self-evaluation report to the Sunset Advisory Commission. The state’s five health and human services agencies ( will be under Sunset Review over the next two years.

    DSHS Self-Evaluation Report

    October 4, 2013

    2013 TSPP David Pharis Award Winner: Rusk State Hospital Patient Wellness Program

    We’re pleased to announce this year’s winner of the TSPP David Pharis Award as Rusk State Hospital Patient Wellness Program!

    This program is responsive to negative trends across our nation of obesity, unhealthy dietary habits, and low exercise rates; in addition to addressing the metabolic syndrome that some mental health patients contend with. RSH professionals, including physicians, nurses, dietitians, and rehabilitation specialists have developed this comprehensive Wellness Program. The program includes a voluntary three week therapeutic educational class for patients, and enhanced medical treatment and monitoring. Physicians refer patients; and nurses, rehabilitation specialists, and dietitians conduct the educational courses. A three tiered system was created for enhanced medical treatment and monitoring, in accordance with the patient’s medical issues. The overall goal of this patient-centered program is to empower patients to “proactively manage their health and fitness, to the highest degree of autonomy and wellness possible”.

    The Wellness Program Guidance Team included the following individuals: Joe Bates, MD, Clinical Director; Carmen Cook, RN, MSN, Director, Ancillary Clinical Services; Ed Bruce, RN, MSN, Chief Nurse Executive; Lynda Roberson, MSW, Director, Residential Services; Shinnitta Forman, MED, Director of PEAR; and Joan Frazier, MD, Medical Clinic.



    October 1, 2013

    Request for Proposal (RFP) Recovery Support Services RFP Pre-Proposal Conference RFP# SA/RSS-0578.1 - Monday, October 7

    Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (MHSA) Division will hold the Pre-Proposal Conference on Monday, October 7, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon CDST which can be attended in-person or via teleconference. Pre-Proposal Conference may end early after questions have been addressed.

    Potential respondents wishing to participate will have 2 options:

    1. Recovery Support Services Pre-Proposal Conference will be held on the main campus of Department of State Health Services (DSHS), 1100 West 49th Street (map enclosed below), Lecture Hall (Room K-100), Austin, Texas, 78756. Seating is limited to 100 persons. Up to 2 representatives per entity/organization will be admitted.

    2. Potential respondents can listen-in to the Pre-Proposal Conference via teleconference. Call-in information: 1-877-820-7831. To access the teleconference enter 177891# to listen-in. Those respondents that plan to listen-in may submit their questions prior to the Pre-Proposal Conference via email by Noon (CT), October 4, 2013, to the designated RFP Point of Contact mailbox ( listed in the RFP. Questions will not be accepted over the phone during the Pre-Proposal Conference.

    Respondents should bring a copy of the RFP as copies will not be available.

    Additional information regarding the pre-proposal conference can be found on the ESBD website at the following link:

    Package 6 – Addendum No. 1 Pre-proposal Conference Announcement and Map (MS Word)


    September 30, 2013

    Announcement: RFP # SA/RSS-0578.1 - Recovery Support Services (Supplemental 2)

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division announces the expected availability of grant funds for State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2014 to provide substance abuse recovery support services.

    Services are being procured statewide. If a respondent is proposing recovery services in multiple Regions, a complete and separate proposal will be required for each Region.

    Respondents may apply only as one of the following organizational types:
    a. Organizations that provide treatment services for substance use disorders (TO);
    b. Peer-run Recovery Community Organizations (RCOs); and
    c. Other Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) that have a history of providing services to individuals and families affected by substance use disorders.

    If a respondent is applying for multiple regions it may only apply as one (1) organization type for those regions.

    Click below to view posting:


    September 13, 2013

    Texas Celebrates Recovery: September is Recovery Month!

    Recovery Month inspires millions of people to share their stories of recovery and assist others who are struggling with substance use and mental disorders.

    This year's theme is, "Together on Pathways to Wellness".  The campaign promotes the societal benefits of prevention and treatment for mental and substance use disorders, celebrates people in recovery, lauds the contributions of treatment and service providers, and promotes the message that recovery in all its forms is possible. Many Recovery Month events are taking place in Texas and around the nation.

    To access a wealth of Recovery Month resources, including the Recovery Month Toolkit please visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) recovery month page at: You can also connect with SAMHSA’s Recovery Month activities and resources on Facebook and Twitter

    Learn more about recovery-oriented initiatives in Texas at 2013 Recovery Month »

    September 13, 2013

    HHSC Issues RFI for Ten-Year Plan for State Hospitals and State Supported Living Centers Systems

    The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) # 529-14-0015 for Ten-Year Plan for State Hospitals and State Supported Living Centers Systems. Please check the HHSC Contract Opportunities webpage ( regularly for further information and updates. The deadline for comments and questions related to this RFI by September 16, 2013, at 2:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time.

    For more information, please see

    September 9, 2013

    September 9 is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Day

    International FASD Awareness Day is observed each year on September 9.  The date 9/9 serves as a reminder to women to abstain from alcohol throughout all nine months of pregnancy.

    FASDs are a group of conditions that can occur in a person whose mother drank alcohol while pregnant.  These conditions can affect each person in different ways, and can range from mild to severe.  They can include physical problems and problems with behavior and learning.

    • Several  ideas for promoting awareness about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in your community may be found at .
    • The Living With FASD 2013 Summit is a 12-day resource for families living with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. This online summit is free of charge and begins September 9, 2013. Visit for information and to register.
    • Learn more about FASD and access additional resources at

    Augst 28, 2013

    Alternatives Conference Scholarships Available - Application Deadline September 20, 2013

    The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health ( and the Department of State Health Services are underwriting scholarships to the Alternatives Conference ( in Austin, TX this December for Texas residents with lived mental health experience.  The deadline for applications is Friday, September 20th.  Please visit for more information.

    August 27, 2013

    The 13th Annual Partners in Prevention (PIP) Training Conference: January 22-24, 2014 in Round Rock

    Each year, a number of Texas state agencies, including the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division (MHSA), collaborate to give providers and professionals an opportunity to share information on how to strengthen families and improve communities.  The conference is a great way to share your knowledge and skills with a broad audience. The conference website may be found at

    Call for Presenters and Exhibitors

     The PIP Training Conference is a great venue to share your knowledge and skills with a broad audience, and to improve services to families around the State of Texas.  We invite you to apply to share your expertise and help enhance the skills and knowledge of individuals working to improve the well-being of children and families.  Conference attendees include program directors and managers, direct service delivery staff including crisis counselors, case managers and parent educators, and many others who work with children and families in their community.

    We are interested in soliciting workshops that will emphasize evidence-based practices in one or more of the following areas: 

    • Child Abuse/Neglect Prevention
    • Juvenile Delinquency Prevention
    • Substance Abuse Prevention    
    • Mental Health Promotion
    • Family Violence Awareness
    • Early Childhood

    The deadline for receiving presenter applications is September 20, 2013. 

    Please email completed applications to

    August 21, 2013

    Block Grant funding for the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2014-2015

    The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) will submit an application to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) for Block Grant funding for the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2014-2015. The application will be combined for Community Mental Health (CMH) and Substance Abuse Treatment and Prevention (SAPT) services for youth and adults throughout the state’s 11 health and human services regions. While the application is being combined, block grant funding will remain separate. The block grant federal funds provide approximately $33 million dollars a year to Texas for the provision of CMH Services and approximately $133 million dollars for SAPT services.

    What are the Block Grants - How do they help States?

    The Mental Health and Substance Abuse Block grant programs award funds to states to establish, expand or enhance an organized, community-based system for providing mental health services for adults with serious mental illness (SMI), children with serious emotional disturbances (SED), and adults and adolescents with or at risk for Substance Use Disorders (SUD). Funds awarded to the state are to be used to carry out the approved state plan, to evaluate programs and services set in place under the plan, and to conduct planning, administration and educational activities related to the provision of services under the plan. The CMH Services Block Grant accounts for approximately 5% of DSHS expenditures of Community Mental Health. The SAPT block grant accounts for approximately 87% of DSHS expenditures on substance abuse services.

    Block Grant Application Structure and Format

    As part of the block grant application process, DSHS has determined priority areas for the intended use of block grant funds which include services for federally required populations, populations determined to be in need as well as enhancements to the service system. For each of the priorities, DSHS has identified goals and strategies to be met during the FFY 2014-2015 years. Addressing these priorities and meeting the goals and strategies is how DSHS intends to utilize block grant and required maintenance of effort funds. Public comment is being requested on these efforts.

    How to Submit Comments

    For information on how to submit comments, please visit Comments must be received by 5:00 p.m. Central Daylight Saving Time, Sunday, September 1, 2013.

    August 19, 2013

    Final Awards, RFP #SA/INTV-540.1- Substance Abuse Intervention Programs

    New information regarding final awards posted August 16, 2013, RFP #SA/INTV-540.1- Substance Abuse Intervention Programs is available at:

    August 16, 2013

    Request for Information: Healthy Community Collaboratives

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division announces the expected availability of grant funds for the State’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2014. This Request for Information (RFI) is intended to gather information for the upcoming competitive Request For Proposal (RFP) for Healthy Community Collaboratives.

    DSHS anticipates that recovery and reintegration into the community served by the community collaborative program will be the overarching goals of participants in the collaborative program. DSHS hopes that the participants secure housing, supportive work, and ongoing recovery from their medical, mental health and substance use disorders.

    DSHS anticipates that the program will actively help people to improve their existing relationships with family and build their network of recovery support systems through involvement with 12-step programs, work, community organizations, and faith-based groups. The goal for the collaborative is that the participants will engage in treatment to foster an active and positive role in their community.

    For complete information, including due date and contact information, please visit

    August 13, 2013

    Questions and Answers for Request for Information (RFI) - Proposed Recovery Support Services
    RFI# SA/RSS-574.01 

    Stakeholders submitted over 120 questions and comments for the Peer Recovery Support Services Request for Information. The Department of State Health Services (DSHS), Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division has developed responses the questions submitted and has posted the submitted comments.

    These questions and answers for RFI No. SA/RSS-574.1 for Proposed Recovery Support Services have been posted to the Electronic State Business Daily (ESBD).  SA/RSS.574.1 – RFI Proposed Recovery Support Services can be viewed at: under Package 2 (MS Word).

    August 8, 2013

    Update to Awards for Behavioral Health Prevention Services

    New, updated information regarding the previously posted tentative awards is now available at

    August 2, 2013

    Substance Abuse Intervention Services Awards

    New Information regarding tentative awards posted August 1, 2013 for RFP #SA/INTV-540.1- Substance Abuse Intervention Programs can be viewed at:

    For questions regarding posting of RFP roster and process, please contact Bernie Rodriguez at

    July 31, 2013

    Awards for Behavioral Health Prevention Services Announced

    The tentative awards roster for Behavioral Health Prevention Services, Requisition SA/PREV-539 [please see], is now available at

    For questions or for further information regarding the RFP roster and award process, please contact the DSHS MHSA Substance Abuse Prevention unit at


    July 30, 2013

    Public Hearing Notice: Proposed Medicaid Payment Rates for Outpatient Behavioral Health Services

    August 20, 2013 at 1:30 PM

    Meeting Site:
    Health and Human Services Commission
    Brown-Heatly Building
    Public Hearing Room
    4900 North Lamar Blvd.

    Entry is through security at the main entrance of the building facing Lamar Boulevard.

    Hearing.  The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will conduct a public hearing to receive public comment on proposed Medicaid payment rates for Outpatient Behavioral Health Services at 1 PM on August 20, 2013.  The hearing will be held in compliance with Human Resources Code §32.0282 and the Texas Administrative Code, Title 1 (1 TAC), §355.201, which require public notice of and hearings on proposed Medicaid reimbursements.   

    Proposal.  The payment rates for Outpatient Behavioral Health Services are proposed to be effective Sept. 1, 2013. 

    Methodology and Justification. The proposed payment rates were calculated in accordance with 1 TAC:

    • §355.8081, which addresses payments for laboratory and x-ray services, radiation therapy, physical therapists' services, physician services, podiatry services, chiropractic services, optometric services, ambulance services, dentists' services, psychologists' services, licensed psychological associates' services, maternity clinic services, and tuberculosis clinic services;
    • §355.8085, which addresses the reimbursement methodology for physicians and other practitioners; and
    • §355.8091, which addresses the reimbursement methodology for licensed professional counselors, licensed master social worker-advanced clinical practitioners, and licensed marriage and family therapists.

    Briefing Package.  A briefing package describing the proposed payment rates will be available at on or after Aug. 6, 2013.  Those interested may obtain a copy of the briefing package before the hearing by contacting Rate Analysis by telephone at 512-730-7401; by fax at 512-730-7475; or by email at  The briefing package will also be available at the public hearing. 

    Written Comments.  Written comments regarding the proposed payment rates may be submitted instead of, or in addition to, oral testimony until 5 p.m. the day of the hearing. Written comments may be sent by U.S. mail, overnight mail, special delivery mail, hand delivery, fax, or email:

    U.S. Mail
    Texas Health and Human Services Commission
    Attention: Rate Analysis, Mail Code H-400
    P.O. Box 149030
    Austin, Texas 78714-9030

    Overnight mail, special delivery mail, or hand delivery
    Texas Health and Human Services Commission
    Attention: Rate Analysis, Mail Code H-400
    Brown-Heatly Building
    4900 North Lamar
    Austin, Texas 78751
    Phone number for package delivery: 512-730-7401

    Attention:  Rate Analysis at 512-730-7475


    People with disabilities who wish to attend the hearing and require auxiliary aids or services should contact Rate Analysis at 512-730-7401 at least 72 hours before the hearing so appropriate arrangements can be made.

    July 15, 2013

    Annual MHSA Stakeholder Open Forum - July 24, 2013 at Austin Convention Center

    Wednesday, July 24, 2013 from 5 – 6:30 PM
    Room 19-B, 4th Floor, Austin Convention Center (North Side)

    Hosted by the Committee on Advising and Planning (CAP) for the Prevention and Treatment of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Disorders and the Texas Department of State Health Services Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division
    We cordially invite you to join us for what promises to be a lively exchange with members of the CAP, DSHS leadership and your colleagues across the state. This is an excellent opportunity to share your perspective and pose questions to CAP and DSHS MHSA leadership on these topics and all others:

    • The future of the MHSA Service Delivery System
    • The 83rd Legislative Session
    • Health Care Reform
    • 1115 Transformation Waiver
    • Workforce Development
    • Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity
    • Peer Support and Recovery

    At the conclusion of the discussion, we will hold a drawing and one lucky attendee will win a complimentary registration to the 2014 Texas Behavioral Health Institute (must be present to win).

    We value the lived experience and the contributions of our many stakeholder partners, including consumers, families, providers, advocacy groups, human service agencies, and legislators. We aim to strengthen these partnerships by hearing from those who use services, provide services, and/or provide advocacy for our public behavioral health system.

    While the Forum is held in conjunction with the annual Texas Behavioral Health Institute, registration for the Institute is not required to attend the Forum.

    Print-Friendly Flyer: MHSA Stakeholder Open Forum - July 24, 2013 (PDF)

    July 8, 2013

    Request for Information for Proposed Recovery Support Services

    Response Due: July 15, 2013, 2:00 PM Central Time

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division announces the expected availability of grant funds for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014. This Request for Information (RFI) is intended to gather information for the upcoming competitive Request For Proposal (RFP) for Recovery Support Services. The following Scopes of Work included in this RFI: 

    1. Recovery Support Services for Recovery Community Organizations
    2. Recovery Support Services for Facilitating Organizations

    This RFI will be used as a research and information gathering tool for preparation of the RFP. No contracts will be issued as a result of this RFI; however, awards will be made as a result of the future RFP. Do NOT submit a proposal based on this RFI. Email:  

    Complete information is available at


    June 26, 2013

    World Drug Day 2013: Make health your "new high" in life, not drugs.

    Today, June 26, the world will commemorate the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, an occasion to drive home the message that drug use can take a heavy toll on health and well-being.

    Learn more about World Drug Day 2013 at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).



    June 14, 2013

    DSHS Stakeholder Workgroup for Jail-Based Competency Restoration Pilot

    Applications Due July 8, 2013

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division is seeking members to serve on a work group to participate in developing and establishing rules for a Jail Based Competency Restoration pilot, as mandated by Act 2013, 83rd Legislature, Senate Bill 1475 (SB 1475).

    This pilot includes mental health or co-occurring psychiatric and substance abuse (COPSD) treatment services, as well as legal education for individuals found Incompetent to Stand Trial (IST), consistent with competency restoration services provided in state mental health facilities.

    SB 1475 directs the commissioner of DSHS to establish a stakeholder workgroup that must be composed of:

    • a sheriff
    • a representative of a local mental health authority
    • a county commissioner, county judge or elected county officer
    • a district attorney or county attorney with criminal jurisdiction
    • a defense attorney judge of a district criminal court or county criminal court
    • two mental health advocates
    • any other member DSHS considers appropriate
    If you meet the criteria listed above and and are interested in serving on this workgroup, please see the document below for complete details and contact information. The deadline to submit a letter of interest is 5 PM Central time Monday, July 8.

    June 10, 2013

    Call for Presenters and Exhibitors: 9th Annual Strengthening Youth and Families Conference, November 12-15, 2013

    Home, School, and Community – Standing Together

    The Strengthening Youth and Families Conference is an annual event sponsored by a collaboration of youth-serving partners, including Texas School Safety Center at Texas State University, Texas A&M University’s Public Policy Research Institute, AgriLife Extension Services, Prairie View A&M University's Juvenile Crime Prevention Center, Texas Juvenile Justice Department, Health and Human Services Commission, Texas Department of State Health Services, Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, the State Volunteer Resource Council for Texas Youth, and Friends for Life. 

    The Conference Planning Committee seeks to offer workshops related to the prevention of high-risk problem behaviors for youth, early intervention for youth who have just begun to engage in indicators of those high-risk behaviors, and treatment for those youth who become trapped in those behaviors.  Workshops will be geared to a multi-disciplinary audience of youth-serving professionals, volunteers, and family members.

    To submit a proposal and for more information, please see 2013 Strengthening Youth & Families Conference - Application for Proposals & Presenters (MS Word)


    May 31, 2013

    Reflecting on Mental Health Month 2013

    The Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division at DSHS thanks all those who support and enhance the mental health service delivery system in Texas every month and through the years.

    Although we have reached the end of National Mental Health Month for 2013, our web page dedicated to the 2013 observance of Mental Health Month remains online throughout the year and features information and resources, as well as the winning entries from our Children's Creativity Contest. Take the time to visit these links – you’ll be very glad you did.

    We look forward to working with our partners on National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month in July, National Mental Health Month 2014 as well as other awareness events throughout the remainder of 2013!

    May 21, 2013

    Adult Mental Health Awareness Poetry Contest Winners Announced!

    In observance of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the Texas Department of State Health Services Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) - Texas held a statewide poetry contest open to adults with or in recovery from mental illness and their adult family members.

    More than 80 poems were received from across Texas for this second annual contest, written by those living with and recovering from mental illness, their friends, and their families. Five winning entries were selected, along with six poems given honorable mention.


    May 16, 2013

    HHS Expedited Rules Process Announced

    Health and Human Services Enterprise has released information on the enterprise-wide expedited rules process that ensures processing of rules that must be effective September 1, 2013.  This expedited process will only be used for rules that are legislatively mandated to be effective September 1, 2013. The timeline identifies and official bulletin are now available.  


    May 15, 2013

    National Women's Health Week and National Prevention Week

    Today, May 15,  marks the mid-point of both National Women’s Health Week and National Prevention Week.

    Learn more about both observances and check out the helpful resources you can use in support of promoting wellness related to mental health and substance abuse on the DSHS MHSA page for 2013 National Women's Health and National Prevention Week!

    Enjoy, share and promote!

    May 10, 2013

    Registration Now Open for Texas Suicide Prevention Symposium

    Registration is now available for the  Texas Suicide Prevention Symposium:  Coming Together to Care 2013 on July 10 8:30am-4:45pm  and the  Post Symposium Event, July 11, 2013 8:30am-12:30pm "Understanding PTSD for Military Members in Civilian Communities" workshop. 

    Both events will be held at the Dallas Marriott at Las Colinas, Irving Texas.  

     To register for these free events, please visit:

    May 8, 2013

    2013 Texas Behavioral Health Institute Registration

    The Department of State Health Services annually hosts the Texas Behavioral Health Institute to promote best practice knowledge to professionals who counsel those who battle addictions, compulsive behaviors, and other mental health disorders.

    The Institute is an excellent opportunity for mental health and substance abuse professionals to learn from nationally recognized experts, discover available resources, and network with other professionals committed to delivering quality services. See for complete information.

    Registration for this year's conference is now open and available at, with discounted pricing through June 15.


    May 7, 2013

    Request for Proposals (RFP) for Tobacco Prevention and Control Coalitions

    RFP #: SA/TPCC-0564.1
    Issued May 3, 2013
    Due June 3, 2013 @ 2:00PM CST

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS or the Department) Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division (MHSA), Tobacco Prevention and Control Program announces the expected availability of fiscal year (FY) 2014 tobacco funds to provide city and county health departments, hospital districts, community-based organizations, and/or tribal governments with funds to manage a comprehensive community Tobacco Prevention and Control Coalition (TPCC). DSHS intends to fund comprehensive coalition services in cities or counties with a population of 500,000 or less. Cities or counties with more than 500,000 population, can only be awarded coalition funding for identified zip codes comprised of a target population with less than 500,000 to provide comprehensive services for persons experiencing documented tobacco-related health disparities.

    Schedule of Events

    1. Issue RFP by posting to the Electronic State Business Daily (ESBD) 05/03/13
    2. Letter of Intent Due (Requested) 05/29/13
    3. Deadline for Submitting Questions 05/15/13
    4. Post Answers to Questions to the ESBD 05/24/13
    5. Deadline for Submission of Proposals 06/03/13
    6. Contract Negotiations 07/01/13
    7. Post Final Awards to the ESBD 07/15/13
    8. Mail/Email Contract(s) to Awarded Respondent(s) for Signature 08/01/13
    9. Anticipated Contract Begin Date 09/01/13

    DSHS reserves the right to change the dates shown above without notice.

    The RFP posting can be viewed at  

    Should you have any questions, please write to  


    May 7, 2013

    Children's Mental Health Week & Children's Mental Health Awareness Day Are Here!

    May 6-10 is National Children’s Mental Health Week.  May 9, 2013 is National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day. Both offer an ideal opportunity for Texans to consider how they might contribute to the emotional well-being of children in their home, schools, and communities. National Children's Mental Health Week is observed during National Mental Health Month. For more information, please visit

    Winners of the 2013 Creativity Contest!

    On Children's Mental Health Awareness Day, we would like to recognize the winners of the 2013 Creativity Contest and extend our thanks and appreciation to all who took the time to enter this year. The Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division of the Department of State Health Services hosted  its 2nd annual statewide creativity contest to promote Children’s Mental Health Week.  There are three categories: Writing, Poster, and Video, with entries received from K-12 students all around Texas. Click here for more information and to see the winning entries!

    May 1, 2013

    Join DSHS in celebrating Mental Health Month!

    May is National Mental Health Month, with special observances taking place throughout the month. Learn about these observances and our work throughout the year to support and enhance the availability of Mental Health services at Mental Health Month - May 2013.


    April 29, 2013

    Behavioral Healthcare DSRIP (Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment) Projects Submitted for Review

    Below is an updated list of Behavioral Healthcare DSRIP (Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment) projects based on the plans HHSC submitted to CMS (Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services) for review.

    DSRIP projects are designed to improve Texas’ health care delivery system, including access to care, quality of care, and health outcomes. Note there will still be some changes in terms of projects approved and valuation amounts as projects go through the federal review and approval process.

    HHSC has posted a revised list of all the 1322 DSRIP projects we submitted to CMS (the above list is a subset of that list). (PDF) 

    Additional information about this overall project is available at:

    An overview of the Overview of Behavioral Healthcare Projects submitted under this five year Medicaid demonstration -- Texas Transformation Waiver – is also included below.


    April 22, 2013

    CMS Announces Opportunity to Apply for Marketplace Navigator Grants

    Grant application deadline is June 7, 2013

    With the October 2014 implementation of the Affordable Care Act, particularly the new Federal Exchange Marketplaces where the uninsured whose income is 100% to 400% of the federal poverty guideline will have the opportunity to shop for and compare insurance benefits and costs before purchasing an insurance plan.  As part of the implementation plan, "Navigators" will be used as a resource for assisting eligible individuals understand new coverage options as they enroll.


    The department is receiving information about how the Exchanges will operate and is contemplating the impact on services provided by local mental health authorities (LMHAs).  In the current Charges for Community-Based Services rule (Chapter 412, Subchapter C), LMHAs are required to assist individuals enroll in Medicaid.  In a similar fashion, it is anticipated that LMHAs will be asked to assist and support individuals who are potentially eligible to enroll in a health insurance plan.  Therefore, the department encourages LMHAs to become Navigators to support this important activity. 


    Recently the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced the availability of new funding to support Navigators in Federal Exchange Marketplaces and LMHAs may want to apply for the Grant.  Applications are due June 7, 2013.  To access the funding opportunity announcement, visit:, and search for CFDA # 93.750.

    To access the proposed rule released April 3, 2013, visit:


    For more information about Navigators, including continuing updates, visit:

    April 18, 2013

    Resources for Coping with Tragic Events

    The April 17 explosion in West, Texas and the bombing at the Boston Marathon on April 15 affected many people around the state and nation, not only those who were at the scene or whose friends or family were directly involved.  Tragic events such as these can have an impact upon all of us.  Feeling at risk or experiencing feelings of anxiety and fear are common reactions.  Parents may be at a loss about how to discuss these events and others like them with their children.  The resources below have been selected in an effort to provide some reassurance and helpful information following the events of the past few days.

    In Texas, to find mental health services in your area, please search for the referral line phone number of your Local Mental Health Authority (LMHA) using the online mental health services search form []. You may call the referral line of the LMHA in your area for confidential help 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

    SAMHSA: Coping with Violence and Traumatic Events

    • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s clearinghouse of information on coping with traumatic events such as the Boston Marathon bombing, including resources for students, parents, teachers, caregivers, responders, and health professionals.

    WebMD: Boston Bombing Aftermath - Fear, Empathy, Anger

    • It’s normal to feel a range of emotions in the days following the terror bombing attack at the Boston Marathon, even if you were thousands of miles away.

    WBUR Boston: Common Health Reform and Reality - Talking with Children about the Boston Marathon Bombing 

    •  Advice on how to talk with children about the attack in Boston. 

    American Red Cross 

    • Disasters are upsetting experiences for everyone involved. Children, senior citizens, people with disabilities and people for whom English is not their first language are especially at risk and are likely to need extra care and help. However, everyone, even the people that others look up to for guidance and assistance, is entitled to their feelings and deserves support throughout the recovery process.

    National Association of School Psychologists’ Tip Sheet for Parents and Teachers

    • High profile acts of violence, particularly in schools, can confuse and frighten children who may feel in danger or worry that their friends or loved-ones are at risk.

    The National Disaster Distress Helpline

    • The National Disaster Distress Helpline is a 24 hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week national service that offers phone- and text-based crisis counseling and support to people in distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster, to help them move forward on the path of recovery. You may reach the Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or by texting "TalkWithUs" or (o "Hablamos" para Español) to 66746. 

    Texas Department of State Health Services: Stress Reaction to Traumatic Events

    • Information for those directly involved in a critical incident, such as first responders, and their families.


    April 8, 2013

    Recovery Coach Training of Trainers - Application Deadline April 15, 2013

    The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is pleased to announce the Recovery Coach Training of Trainers (TOT). The purpose of the Recovery Coach TOT is to train and certify qualified participants as Recovery Coach Trainers. In turn, these qualified individuals can train other persons to become Recovery Coaches and thus perpetuate the presence of Recovery Coaches in their region. Please note that the application deadline is April 15, 2013. For more information, please see the Broadcast Message and Applicaiton below:

    March 22, 2013

    Second Annual Adult Poetry Contest

    In observance of Mental Health Awareness Month this May, the Texas Department of State Health Services Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) - Texas are holding a statewide poetry contest open to adults with or in recovery from mental illness and their adult family members.


    March 21, 2013

    Second Annual Statewide Creativity Contest!

    It’s that time again! The Mental Health and Substance Abuse Division of the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is hosting its 2nd annual statewide creativity contest to promote Children’s Mental Health Week, May 5-11, 2013. There are three categories: Writing, Poster, and Video. Winners in each category will be recognized on Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, May 9, 2013. The winners’ work will be displayed at the Texas State Capitol on our exhibit promoting Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week and will be posted online.

    For complete information, including contest guidelines, submission requirements, entry form, and deadline, please visit




    March 14, 2013

    Stakeholder Survey on the Impact of Sequestration on Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services

    On March 1, a series of automatic spending cuts —called the sequester – became federal law. Last week, DSHS received guidance regarding this law from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) about the sequestration cuts to the federal block grants they administer. Both the substance abuse and mental health grants are scheduled to be reduced by an across the board 5% for this federal fiscal year (ending September 2013). In Texas, this amounts to a $6.7 million reduction for substance abuse services and a $1.72 million reduction for mental health services.

    To assist us in determining how sequestration cuts will be imposed, DSHS is soliciting input from our stakeholders via this survey:  Stakeholder Survey on the Impact of Sequestration on Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

    March 14, 2013

    Request for Comment: Texas Administrative Code Amendments and Repeal

    Request for Comment On 1) Amendments to 25 Texas Administrative Code, §412.202, concerning Special Considerations, and 2)Repeal of Chapter 415, Subchapter J, concerning Preadmission Screening and Resident Review (PASRR) -- Mental Health Services. Comments Due: March 23, 2013.

    Mental Health Case Management: New Chapter Adopted

    Effective February 14, 2013, the Department of State Health Services has adopted a new Chapter 412, Subchapter I concerning Mental Health Case Management Services. Please see Broadcast 90 and Adopted text of Chapter 412, Subchapter I concerning Mental Health Case Management Services for details.


    February 18, 2013

    March 20 is Texas Tobacco-Free Kids Day 2013!

    Do you want your school and community to be safer and healthier? Do you support tobacco-free living? Join youth from throughout Texas on March 20 for the 2013 Texas Tobacco-Free Kids Day (TTFKD)!

    Students all over Texas are organizing activities encouraging people to Stand Up, Speak Up, and Be Tobacco Free to combat the efforts and influence of the tobacco industry, and we’re inviting you to take part in this annual awareness day. Follow these three simple steps to be a part of this statewide event:

    1. Plan it!
    Putting on a successful event takes planning, but we’ve got an easy way for you to get started! Check out our new and improved website at, which offers TONS of resources and ideas for your projects - including $500 mini-grants to help fund your ideas! Go to the Say What! website, click on Events, then Texas Tobacco-Free Kids Day for more details!

    2. Do it!
    Host your event on or around March 20 and take part in the largest youth tobacco prevention awareness day in the country!

    3. Report it!
    Once you’ve completed your project, go to and fill out the TTFKD reporting form or Log In and submit the final specs of your event!

    The goal of TTFKD is to get every school in Texas involved in the effort to help students make healthy choices by not using tobacco today and in the future. Make a positive difference in your community and join the Say What! movement in Texas -Students, Adults and Youth Working Hard Against Tobacco!


    February 14, 2013

    Join The Council for Advising and Planning (CAP) for the Prevention and Treatment of Mental and Substance Use Disorders

    The Council for Advising and Planning (CAP) for the Prevention and Treatment of Mental and Substance Use Disorders is seeking new members. The mission of the CAP is:

    To ensure the provision of consumer and family centered services and supports for persons with mental and/or substance use disorders or serious emotional disturbance. Monitor, review, evaluate and make recommendations regarding the allocation and adequacy of mental and substance use disorder prevention, treatment, recovery and resilience support services in the State.

    The CAP is seeking persons to fill the following two positions:

    • FAMILY MEMBER/ ADVOCATE of someone with a Mental Health or Substance Use disorder or both. (One position available)
    • CONSUMER/ ADVOCATE of Mental Health (One position available)

    The CAP is particularly interested in persons who can serve in one of the above positions and can represent youth under the age of 21 or persons who reside on one of the federally recognized Indian Reservations located in Texas (Tigua/Ysleta Del Sur, Alabama-Coushatta Tribes , Kickapoo Traditional Tribe). 


    January 14, 2013

    Bringing Recovery Support Systems to Scale  - Texas Department of State Health Services Recovery Oriented Systems of Care (ROSC) Forum on January 25 in Austin, Texas

    The Bringing Recovery Support Systems to Scale Forum is designed to bring together key stakeholders from the substance abuse and mental health fields, professionals as well as peers and consumers. The forum will be held January 25, 2013 in Austin at the Doubletree Hotel.

    Agenda (MS Word)

    Hotel information and booking:

    Conference registration:

    Featured speaker bio - Dr. Ijeoma Achara (PDF)

    January 9, 2013

    Partners in Prevention Conference, February 6-8, Round Rock

    Early Registration Discount Through January 14, 2013

    Join us in Round Rock, Texas (Austin area) to learn from state and national prevention experts. The annual Partners in Prevention (PIP) Conference, sponsored by the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) Prevention and Early Intervention Division, is a multi-day training opportunity for professional and service providers in the following fields:

    • Child abuse prevention,
    • juvenile delinquency prevention,
    • substance abuse prevention,
    • mental health promotion, and
    • family violence awareness.

    Increased communication, understanding, and active collaboration across these service systems will help strengthen families as well as improve communities. In order to bring applicable topics to all prevention partners a number of Texas state agencies collaborate to put on this training opportunity.

    Conference Date:  February 6-8, 2013.  For complete information, please visit


    Looking for an older announcement? Please visit the MHSA News & Announcements Archive

    Last updated August 15, 2017