As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to shift in new directions, those at the highest risk need resources to fight back more now than ever. New York State Governor Kathy Hochul recently selected six New York state mental health providers that will be awarded up to $9 million in funding over a five-year period to support their community programs that help adults 55 or older deal with issues relating to mental health, substance use, or aging-related concerns.
"As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact communities across New York, we must do everything in our power to protect the most vulnerable among us," Hochul noted of the awards. "This financial support will help older New Yorkers in communities that have been especially hard by the pandemic, and the funding will ensure they have the assistance and support to live independently and with dignity."
The program is entitled, "Partnership to Support Aging in Place in Communities Severely Impacted by COVID-19," and focuses on communities hit hardest by COVID-19, all while also creating partnerships between OMH-licensed providers and agencies licensed by the NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) and the NYS Office for Aging (NYSOFA).
"These awards will help older New Yorkers who are already facing great challenges live independently and with greater dignity in their own communities,” remarked Office of Mental Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan. “These partnerships bring together all the resources available through OMH and our sister agencies — OASAS and NYSOFA — to help ensure that older New Yorkers who are living with mental illness or substance use issues have the opportunity to remain safely in their own homes."
The awarded programs include Service Program for Older People (SPOP), Samuel Field YM&YWHA, Jamaica Hospital, and Ohel Childrens Home and Family Services in the New York City area, Orange County Department of Mental Health in the Hudson Valley region, and Central Nassau Guidance & Counseling Services in the Long Island area.
"This funding opportunity will provide access to quality health care for older adults impacted by substance use, addiction and mental health conditions,” New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports Commissioner Chinazo Cunningham said of the awards. “Working together through community and State-sponsored partnerships will ensure that we are providing effective, comprehensive and individualized services to address the needs of this vulnerable population."