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This topic has 14 replies, 9 voices, and was last updated 9 months, 3 weeks ago by Shelia R Albright.

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    • Welcome everyone! We are very excited to get this Recruitment Boot Camp started. Please use this space to access the learning collaborative materials and to share information with your fellow cohort members. If you have any questions, all feel free to reach out at “” or Thanks, Michelle

    • Hello!
      I am Kristina Daniel and I am the Chief Behavioral Health Officer for Valley-Wide Health Systems, Inc. We are a FQHC in Southern Colorado. We serve many rural areas and provide services to over 33,000 people. I am a licensed professional counselor and licensed addictions counselor.

      At Valley-Wide, the integrated BH program started about 3-4 years ago and I came on board 1.5 years ago. We had some trouble early in the program getting it going, but we have now adopted the PCBH model and only provide consultation and brief interventions during visits (we do provide some(4-6 sessions) brief 30-minute follow-up sessions, but it is not traditional BH outpatient care in the clinic). I currently have 10 integrated BHPs and need another 4-5 to be fully staffed. I am also looking for a supervisor to support the team.

      We also provide traditional outpatient services out of a separate space. I currently am fully staffed in this setting.

      The challenges I have had related to recruitment have been related to people not understanding integrated care when they apply and think they can provide “traditional” services just in a different setting. We have changed our recruitment processes already so potential candidates meet with me even before an interview to discuss what our model looks like to see if they are still interested. We have also spent a lot of time educating our providers, HR, and other team members who help with interviews and community recruitment about behavioral health. In the last year, the understanding by our recruitment team has increased, so that has been great!

      I am so excited about learning new ways to recruit. I do think this population has specific needs and requests that are atypical in an FQ environment. I am also hoping to find ways that we can find seasoned clinicians who are willing to shift gears into this exciting system. I do not mind supervising new clinicians, but I have found that sometimes the confidence that is needed in the PC setting is sometimes just not built in newer clinicians who are still figuring out their processes. So, it just makes it tougher. We do it, but it has not been overly successful. So, if there are some techniques to help new clinicians be successful, that would be super helpful.

      Sorry for this being so long! I have high hopes for this process.

      • Hi Kristina,

        We are so excited to have you on board for this learning collaborative! It is wonderful that you are using the PCBH model of care and it is such a natural fit into the health center model. I do agree about the complexities of supervising newer clinicians who are still figuring out their practice model. I think this is a great discussion to bring into the live sessions.


    • Howdy everyone!

      My name is Susan Cort. I’m the Talent & Development Manager at Presbyterian Medical Services (PMS) based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. We’re the largest network of community health centers/FQHCs in the state. We offer integrated primary care and behavioral health services at approximately 50 health centers. I’ve been here for almost 20 years overseeing training and statewide recruitment for 350+ job titles (we also do early childhood education, senior services as well as programs for developmentally disabled adults and developmentally delayed children). We’re very proud of Totah Behavioral Health Authority, a program that uses traditional Native American healing methods to address substance abuse issues. It also involves wrap-around services such as temporary housing and a Sobering Center.

      We have over 100 licensed, master’s level behavioral health staff and 20+ vacancies. We have a long list of recruitment strategies that we’ve implemented, but it seems like we’re hitting up against a national shortage of qualified candidates. Or maybe that’s just an excuse for our recruitment problems? 🙂 Plus, we have a retention issue. Non-independently therapists tend to join us, they get their supervised hours to become independently licensed then leave us. Reasons seem related to the quantity of documentation that Medicaid requires. But of course there’s nothing we can do about that.

      I’m looking forward to learning new strategies, ideas and approaches to recruitment and retention. I’m very open-minded and willing to try almost anything to get these badly needed services to our communities.

      Looking forward to getting to know everyone!
      Susan Cort

      • Hello! My name is Dani Marchman, LCSW, and I am the Behavioral Health Clinical Director at Lifelong Medical Care, an FQHC in the bay area, California. I am new to this role, having worked before in community mental health. We have a wide range of program types outside our 7 integrated clinics, including supportive housing, homelessness services drop in and street outreach, and residential AOD tx for pregnant and parenting women. We continue to struggle with recruiting diverse staff to match the patient population we serve, particularly African-American and Spanish-speaking therapists. We do relatively well with retention, but could always improve. We want to be better known as a diverse and anti-racist organization. We also want to better match our candidates to our short-term model of care, which is hard as some therapists really want to do depth work, and many of our clients could certainly benefits from this. We also want to create better support for our growing number of therapists and Associate social workers so they will stay even longer.

        • Hi Dani, welcome and so excited to have you as part of this cohort! In our second session we’ll be talking more about having the workforce reflect the patient population and it is definitely complex because you also need to find the candidates that match your population. Please bring your questions and experiences to today’s session and I think it will be a great conversation!

      • Hi Susan, welcome to the learning collaborative and so excited to have you onboard! The problem you bring up about clinicians leaving after receiving their supervision hours is definitely one that we hear about quite frequently. This is another topic we’ll address in the learning collaborative because retention is just as crucial as recruitment. Hopefully we can all share ideas of what has worked and what hasn’t in order to increase the retention of providers.

    • Hello! My name is Francesca Neveu Gibson and I am the Human Resources Analyst at Asian Health Services. We are a FQHC in the heart of Oakland’s Chinatown. We have two mental health departments in our organization. Our Behavioral Health Department oversees patients with minor to moderate mental health disorders while our Specialty Mental Health Department oversees patients with moderate to severe mental health disorders. Some of our biggest strengths is that we give back to our community and we make sure we assess their needs. However some of the things we need to improve on is finding staff who are bilingual in an Asian language but also has the background in the mental health fields. I am so excited to be apart of this cohort and want to learn as much as I can!

      • Hi Francesca, welcome to the cohort and so excited to have you onboard! Finding clinicians who have the cultural background/knowledge and language skills is a very common challenge we hear about. I know other fellow cohort members are facing similar barriers. We will definitely talk more about this throughout the learning collaborative and hopefully share ideas with each other to help strengthen the recruitment and retention efforts of a diverse staff.

    • Hello! My name is Melinda Maynard-Thompson and I am the Director of Human Resources for Logan Mingo Area Mental Health, Inc. We were designated as an FQHC Look-Alike in Feb. 2020 and are the only dually designated FQHC-LAL and Comprehensive Behavioral Health Clinic in West Virginia. We have served rural southwestern WV for the past 50 years as a community mental health center. With our recent FQHC-LAL designation, we are now able to offer primary care, dentistry, women’s health and many other services to our communities, increasing access to healthcare for our region. We currently have five locations, including a crisis stabilization unit, 28-day residential substance use treatment facility, ID/D Waiver program, two clinic sites and an administrative site.
      Our biggest strength is our ability to now offer our patients more services and access to care. We offer transportation services and that has been invaluable to the patients we serve in the rugged terrain of the Appalachians. Our biggest weakness at this time is the challenge we face with recruitment and retention. We are looking forward to the boot camp in hopes we can learn more ways to overcome these issues.

    • Hi Melinda, so wonderful to have you in this cohort and very excited to have you join us and share your experience as a rural health center. Offering transportation services is one key factor in ensuring that patients get the care they need and it is so great to hear how successful your health center has been in this endeavor. Recruitment and retention is definitely time consuming which presents a real challenge, especially to health centers, when time is already so limited. We are hoping that by the end of the learning collaborative we can look at how to be proactive in these endeavors to cut down on the time spent preparing for retention and recruitment.

    • Hi All! I am Michelle Donaghy, Human Resources Director at HealthFirst Bluegrass in Lexington, Kentucky. We are an independent FQHC providing integrated care that includes dental, pharmacy, behavioral health, and medical primary and specialty care. We have been serving a diverse population in central Kentucky since 1981, and currently have ten (10) locations, some of which are satellite clinics in primary schools throughout Lexington. I have been in Human Resources for over 20 years, but am new to HealthFirst Bluegrass. I am looking forward to participating in this cohort to network and learn more about behavioral health in the community health setting.

    • Hello Everyone! My name is Chinua “Chin” Matthews and I am the Administrative Assistant and Internship Coordinator for La Clinica de La Raza in Oakland. La Clinica is a non-profit federally qualified health center, that works to give high quality healthcare to underserved communities. We also have a special focus on serving the Latin-American community and those who have recently immigrated to the US. Since we are located in the Bay Area it can be hard sometimes to attract high value staff that are in line with our values. In addition to this, because a majority of our patients are monolingual in Spanish, it is required in several positions. I am looking forward to getting some new strategies to help with this recruitment issues!

    • Hi,
      I am Shelia Alright and I am LCSW/Wellness Clinic Manager for HealthFirst Bluegrass. We are a FQHC in Lexington, KY. HealthFirst provides integrated care with behavioral health consultation and brief interventions with PCP, Women’s Health and Dental services. Also, HealthFirst has a Wellness Clinic and school based clinics which provide psychiatric and individual therapy services. The challenge we experience in recruitment is limited number of applicants from which to make a selection. I am looking forward to learn new ways of recruitment which includes a well thought out plan. I look forward to sharing this time with fellow boot camp participants.

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