For a quick overview of Integral Care, please click here to download a Fact Sheet .
The following are among the most critical issues Integral Care currently faces:
- Access to Services: Integral Care’s service waitlist in June 2010 was 3,150
- Health Care Reform: More than 50,000 people in Travis County are estimated to qualify for health care reform, but the care needed by ATCIC’s consumers may not be covered
- Local Jail System: Approximately one-third of Travis County Jail detainees receive mental health services, but community centers are more appropriate treatment settings and cost-effective
- Hospital Systems: It is well demonstrated that long-term community mental health care is both more effective and cost-effective than treatment in psychiatric hospitals
- Housing: It is estimated that almost 30,000 units of affordable housing are needed in Austin; of those, 2,000 require in-home services for persons with mental and developmental disabilities
Guiding Principals for the 82nd Legislative Session
Given these challenges, Integral Care, the Mental Health Task Force and New Milestones Foundation with support from the Texas Council of Community Centers, have adopted the following guiding principles:
- Provide timely information to stakeholders and alert the community about legislative efforts on:
- Unfunded mandates and infringing or conflicting legislation that negatively impacts service, treatment options, or consumer rights, and
- Proposed budget cuts that would reduce current service capacity and treatment options.
- Promote legislation that benefits the system of community centers, the integration of behavioral and physical health, and efforts to provide services for individuals with dual diagnosis.
- Champion legislation that respects the dignity of persons with disabilities and recognizes the right to live meaningful and productive lives in their homes and communities without fear of abuse or neglect.
- Build on investments from the past two legislative sessions by exploring legislative policy that will leverage access to mental health and chemical dependency support services and defer individuals from emergency rooms, hospitalization and the criminal justice system.
- Participate in the development of and support effective, cost-saving community-based options and alternatives for preventative and early-intervention treatments.
- Support strategies that offset or prevent unintended negative impacts of federal health care reform for individuals with developmental disabilities or psychiatric illnesses.