Overview

The National Association for Rural Mental Health (NARMH) is a professional organization that serves the field of rural behavioral health. NARMH's membership includes the entire spectrum of the rural mental health community, including consumers, family members, practitioners, administrators, educators, researchers, and policy makers. A unifying force for NARMH has been a focus on rural concerns, which includes a commitment to rural people and those that serve them. This belief that rural comes first has allowed NARMH to concentrate its efforts to improve access, availability, acceptability of behavioral health and substance abuse services and research in rural and frontier areas.

Message from NARMH President

David Weden - President

Welcome to the National Association for Rural Mental Health (NARMH). NARMH is a membership organization focused on raising awareness of and responding to a variety of rural mental health and social service concerns. Through your NARMH membership, your voice is linked with others to promote rural mental health issues at the federal, state and county levels. Benefits of joining NARMH are outlined below and you may find information on various membership levels and the form to join at https://www.narmh.org/join.html

Some of NARMH’s ongoing activities include:

ADVOCACY

Within the past year, NARMH has participated in and helped sponsor Congressional Briefings on topics such as:

Is Treating Depression the Answer to Solving the Opioid Crisis?

Preventing Suicide in Older Adults

Medicaid, the Affordable Care Act and Impact of Repeal Efforts on Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

In addition, NARMH is a member of the Mental Health Liaison Group- a coalition of more than 60 national organizations representing consumers, family members, mental health and addiction providers, advocates, payers, and other stakeholders committed to strengthening Americans’ access to mental health and addiction care.

NARMH has made the voice of rural mental health heard regarding legislative issues such as:

Excellence in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment Expansion Act (S. 1905/H.R. 3931) which would extend current Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHCs) for one more year and expand the program to eleven more of the states that originally applied but were excluded from the original demonstration due to a current statutory limitation of eight states. It would represent an investment in the promising CCBHC model as a means to address the opioid epidemic and the broader behavioral health crisis in America

Medicaid Reentry Act (H.R. 1329) which would grant Medicaid eligibility to incarcerated individuals with substance use conditions 30-days prior to their release

Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions and Making Health Care Affordable Act of 2019, a vital step to comprehensively ensuring higher quality health coverage at lower costs

Investing for the People Act of 2019 (H.R. 2021), legislation that would raise the defense and nondefense discretionary caps by $88 billion each in Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021, a means to ensure resources are available to address rural mental health needs

Ensuring rural mental health is highlighted in the congressional resolution expressing support of May as Mental Health Month

PUBLICATIONS

The Journal of Rural Mental Health is the official journal of NARMH. It publishes peer-reviewed articles on rural mental health research, practice, and policy within the United States and internationally. Focused on issues of special interest to those living and working in rural areas, the journal welcomes research on such topics as barriers to improving or accessing care in rural environments, issues faced by underserved populations, and disparities in mental health care. Discussion of policy implications, community-level issues, and multidisciplinary considerations is encouraged as is exploration of evidence-based practices, cultural factors, and ethical and regulatory considerations. Paid members of NARMH receive free access to the online version of the Journal of Rural Mental Health which is published by the Journals Program of the American Psychological Association. If you are interested in submitting an article for the journal, please visit the General Call for Papers at https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/rmh/call-for-papers-general

In addition, members also receive the monthly newsletter from NARMH and the National Association of County Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Directors (NACBHDD) as well as a monthly Under the Microscope, which provides a policy analysis of a current issue, and Headline DC, which provides updates on major developments in the Nation’s Capital.

ANNUAL CONFERENCE

One of the highlights for NARMH each year is the National Conference. The 46th Annual NARMH Conference, Beyond Treatment: Tackling Social Determinants to Improve Rural Mental Health, will be held from August 17 to 20 in Portland, Oregon.

In addition to other benefits, individuals with a current membership receive a discount on conference registration Make plans now to come and make connections with others interested in rural mental health. Let your voice be linked with others in promoting rural mental health.

Once again, welcome. If you have any questions or would like further information regarding NARMH, please feel free to reach out to me. My direct contact information is:

David Weden

President

National Association for Rural Mental Health(NARMH)

Email: david.weden@integralcare.org