Daily Press: Virginia could see its biggest-ever jump in spending on mental health treatment

Governor Ralph Northam has proposed a $228 million package to fund Virginia’s mental and behavioral health services. This 11% uptick will be put towards the state’s nine hospitals and private institutions over the next two years. If approved, Community Service Boards and other key support services will be funded in order to ease the discharge process. Improving upon the state’s current crisis services, outpatient services, veterans’ programs, peer support services, supportive housing and assertive community treatment teams will be a priority for prevention.

Click HERE to read the budget breakdown.

Editorial: Should Metro America Subsidize Rural America?

This Roanoke Times Editorial explores the polarizing comments made by Jackson Kernion and Brad Blakeman, both academics discussing the following popular, unspoken opinion – “Why bother [with economic revitalization in rural communities]? Maybe investing in rural America— especially the coalfields of Appalachia — is simply a waste of resources. Maybe the federal government should simply buy out people who live there and let the region revert to nature as a giant national forest.

Click HERE to read.

$44,000 for an Ambulance, Hour-Long Drives to an ER: The Impossible Cost of Healthcare in Appalachia.

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Mason Adams captures Southwest Virginia’s healthcare climate and the dire consequences brought on by rural hospital closures. Downgraded trauma centers, a lack of providers and reliable, cost-efficient transportation are a few things affecting a community where the median income has remained around $32,590. The article also includes testimony on how the community continues to rally in an effort to secure the care that they deserve.

Click HERE to read.