The Hays County Commissioners Court has recently approved a new initiative to address mental health and substance abuse issues outside of the criminal justice system. This program will be led by a newly-appointed behavioral health coordinator within the Hays County Health Department.
According to Matthew Gonzales, the Health Department manager, the Behavioral Health Coordinator will be responsible for developing and spearheading the behavioral health program for the county. This includes addressing mental health disparities in various aspects of daily life, such as at home, work, school, and leisure activities. The coordinator will also map out a plan for how the county addresses mental health in the future.
The need for this position was identified by the Hays County Behavioral Advisory Team, which recognized a lack of coordinated mental health resources within the county. The objective is to establish a program that can better identify and coordinate mental health resources for the community. Precinct 2 Commissioner Michelle Cohen expressed confidence in the department’s efforts to address mental health issues, citing the long-standing disparities in mental health and substance use within the county. The new initiative is expected to play a crucial role in addressing these ongoing challenges.
For more information on the county’s health department and its programs, individuals can visit the department’s website.