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California Mental/Behavioral Health
Disaster Planning Project

The State of California launched a Mental/Behavioral Health Disaster Planning project to develop a comprehensive disaster mental health plan for California in 2012. Phase I was the development of the State of California Mental/Behavioral Health Disaster Framework published December 17, 2012. The Framework provides a comprehensive guidance document for disaster mental and behavior health response in California. Phase II began with the convening of the Core Work Group in December 2015 to develop a work plan for the Framework. Phase III began in the Fall of 2016 to implement the work plan. As of November 2016, and moving forward, the work plan will focus on integrating mental/behavioral health response into the California Public Health and Medical Emergency Operations Manual (EOM) and developing a separate “guidance/toolkit” with specific mental/behavioral health information and resources that local Departments of Mental Health and Medical and Health Operational Area Coordinators (MHOACs) can use to develop and improve their local plans.

The Core Work Group is led by the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA). Representatives from key state agencies including CA Office of Emergency Services (OES), CA OES Office for Access and Functional Needs, CA Department of Aging, CA Department of State Hospitals, CA Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, CA Association of Health Facilities, Health officers Association of California, CA Department of Developmental Services, CA Behavioral Health Coordinator’s Committee, CA Hospital Association (CHA), representatives from county Departments of Behavioral/Mental Health, American Red Cross (mental health and spiritual care), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, SAMHSA, and members of CDMHC who represent the various professional mental health associations.

For additional information contact:

Sandra Stark Shields, LMFT, LPCC
CDMHC Representative for the California Behavioral
  Health Disaster Framework Project
LA County Department of Mental Health


California Disaster Mental Health Coalition
© 2017