North Country behavioral health systems were well represented at a June 18th workshop presented by Dr. Jill Williams, Director of the Division of Addiction Psychiatry at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. The workshop, titled “Treating Tobacco in Mental Health Settings,” was attended by approximately 75 people, including nine North Country providers representing Behavioral Health Services North, Citizen Advocates, Clinton County Mental Health, and Essex County Mental Health. During the workshop, Dr. Williams described the impact of tobacco use on illness and recovery, reviewed aspects of nicotine dependence and motivation to quit, and made suggestions for assessment and integration of information into treatment plans.
North Country Healthy Heart staff also attended the session and is working with each of these behavioral health systems to develop plans for implementation of evidence-based tobacco treatment in their settings. “The workshop presented the perfect opportunity to kick-start the planning process,” suggested Ann Morgan, Health Systems Change Project Coordinator for the Heart Network. “I’m excited by the enthusiasm our providers demonstrated while there and looking forward to following up with everyone to start talking about next steps.”
The workshop was hosted by Glens Falls Hospital’s Living Tobacco Free Initiative and St. Peter’s Health Partners Center for Health Programs and Promotion and made possible with funding from the NYS Bureau of Tobacco Control’s Health Systems grant.Back Row L-R: Dr. Jill Williams (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Patricia Sauvie (Citizen Advocates), Annie McKinley (Essex County Mental Health-ECMH), Donna Robert (Behavioral Health Systems North – BHSN), Linda Wetherhult (BHSN), Peter Trout (Clinton County Mental Health – CCMH), Stacey Beebie (CCMH).
Front Row L-R: Kristina Pierson (ECMH), Ann Morgan (Heart Network), Jacqueline Torrance (ECMH), Carol Canning (CCMH) and Margot “Lefty” Gold (Heart Network)