Behavioral healthcare is “ESSENTIAL” during this healthcare crisis. Governor Whitmer’s “Stay Home; Stay Safe” Executive Order also includes the following information:
Essential Behavioral Health Services and Stay Home Stay Safe Executive Order 2020-21 in the COVID-19 Context
“All behavioral health services are essential to sustain and protect life and therefore must continue to be provided under the Governor’s Stay Home Stay Safe Order. Behavioral health services shall continue to be provided in homes, residential or clinical settings if such services cannot reasonably be performed telephonically or through other virtual methods and are necessary to sustain and protect life. Home-based or clinic-based services are necessary to sustain and protect life if, based on a provider’s good faith clinical judgment, are necessary for the individual to remain in the least restrictive environment, are required for assistance with activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs), be sustained on life-preserving medication, as well as those services necessary to maintain behavioral or psychiatric stability.”
Maintaining as normal as possible a routine is also important. During this difficult time, it is critical that we make every effort to maintain our mental health and avoid seeking crisis services at hospital emergency rooms, so they can focus on people infected with the coronavirus. If you, or someone you know is in crisis, the Michigan Community Mental Health offices and provider agencies are open, including area crisis centers. The following are links to important information to support behavioral health services:
CMH Mental health crisis lines: https://www.michigan.gov/documents/cmh_8_1_02_37492_7.PDF
Michigan Crisis Residential Network: https://www.crisisresidentialnetwork.com/michigan.html
Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus#tab=tab_1
I realize this is a scary time for all of us. Staying home is not easy. We sincerely thank our local NAMI affiliates who are in the process of providing NAMI support groups online. I encourage us all to try to avoid information overload as it only increases our anxiety. Don’t watch the news all day; check it periodically. Social Distancing really means “Physical Distancing.” While we may need to maintain physical distance that doesn’t mean we cannot remain connected, so let’s please make an extra effort to check in on our family and friends by phone, text, social media, facetime or whatever means you have available to you. “Listen to the professionals!” We at NAMI Michigan are working very closely with federal, state and local officials, including the NAMI national office and will provide you with as up to date, accurate information as possible, without overloading you.
We are a resilient group! I sincerely thank you all, including the Governor’s office, MDHHS, our CMH and provider agencies, our fellow advocacy organizations and sponsors for your service, strength, support and patience during this time. As I have said many times before, and will continue to believe, WE ARE BETTER TOGETHER!
Kevin Fischer, Executive Director