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Mental Health trade group names Crowe 'Legislator of the Year'

Johnson City Press • Dec 11, 2018 at 3:57 PM

The Tennessee Association of Mental Health Organizations (TAMHO) recently honored state Sen. Rusty Crowe, R-Johnson City, with its Legislator of the Year award. 

The statewide trade association chose Crowe for the award because of his work to increase access to community-based behavioral health services, according to a Tuesday press release from the Tennessee Senate Republican Caucus. 

“I am proud to accept this award,” said Crowe, who serves as chairman of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee. 

“The TAMHO is so important in its work delivering mental health services to many of our state’s most vulnerable citizens and families, who without these mental health organizations, would be struggling to find ways for their loved ones to function and lead productive lives if possible. I applaud the very difficult work that our state’s TAMHO groups do and look forward to working with them this upcoming 111th Session.”

Dr. Teresa Kidd, CEO of Frontier Health and 2018 president of TAMHO, applauded Crowe for hearing members’ concerns about an initiative that could have hurt service availability and delivery for some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens.

Kidd also credited Crowe for educating his colleagues in the Senate about issues and concerns surrounding the application of value-based initiatives, known as Episodes of Care, for those with chronic behavioral health conditions. 

“Throughout 2017 and 2018, Crowe made himself available to meet with providers and constituents to hear their concerns surrounding the application of the Episodes of Care model to chronic behavioral health conditions and for the implications of this model for those TAMHO serves,” the press release stated. 

“Senator Crowe convened several special sessions of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee to hear from behavioral health experts across the state. These hearings resulted in a delay of the Attention Deficit Disorders Episode by a year so that providers could get their systems better prepared.” 

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