Category Archives: Behavioral Health and Recovery Services

Wellness Matters – November Issue

Wellness Matters is an e-Journal of San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services. Topics in this issue of Wellness Matters include:

– Integrated Medication Assisted Treatment- One year outcomes
– Safe School and Communities (From the Director’s Desk)
– MHSA Program Highlight: El Centro de Libertad “The Freedom Center”
– Filipino Mental Health Initiative Celebrates 10th Anniversary
– Skyline College Introduces FutureVIEWS Program
– And more!


Wellness Matters – September Issue

Wellness Matters is an e-Journal of San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services which publishes every other month. This month, we highlight Recovery Month wm-0916and Suicide Prevention Week.

Stories in this issue include:

– Recovery Happens with Faith, Opportunity and Support
– Celebrating National Recovery Month
– Our Families, Our Stories, Our Recovery
– Seeing the Benefits of Somatosensory Interventions:  NMT in Action
– Suicide Prevention is Everyone’s Business
– MHSA Program Highlight: StarVista Crisis Intervention and Prevention Center
– Assistant Outpatient Treatment Services Launched July 1st
– Teen Suicide
– And more!

Learn About How to Prevent Suicide Among Older Adults

The San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services is hosting a training free and open to the public on suicide prevention among older adults (generally 60+). The target audience is for anyone serving and supporting older adults in San Mateo County, including clinicians, mental health staff, community center staff and other individuals supporting older adults.

The training will feature the following great speakers:

Dr. Patrick Arbore (Institute of Aging, Center for Elderly Suicide Prevention)
Carmen Lee (Stamp Out Stigma)
Dr. Barbara Yates-Weissman (San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services)

The training will take place on Tuesday, September 13 12:15-1:30 pm in Room 100, 225 37th Avenue, San Mateo, CA, 94403. For more information, please see attached flyer.


Get Certified in Youth Mental Health First Aid – Fall Dates!

YMHFA SMCOE 11-7 & 12-5

Youth Mental Health First Aid is being offered on Monday, November 7th and Monday, December 5th at the San Mateo County Office of Education.

Learn how to recognize the unique warning signs and risk factors of a mental health challenge and how to offer support and help until appropriate professional help is received!

Classroom teachers, school site administrators, school office personnel, coaches, bus drivers, after school providers, parents, teacher’s aides, school health aides, yard duty staff, crossing guards, peers and other school personnel are strongly encouraged to become Youth Mental Health First Aiders.

Sign up today!  To register, click on the following links:

Monday, November 7th:

Monday, December 5th:

For more information about YMHFA contact Natalie Andrade at or 650-372-8548


Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention Unit Joins BHRS


CDIP Team clockwise from left: Edith Cabuslay, Shaunda Scruggs, Fancesca Lomotan, and Elaine Lo

The Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention (CDIP) Unit from Family Health Services will has joined the BHRS Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) Prevention Services unit. This move is envisioned by Health System Administration as an opportunity to consolidate the prevention efforts from the two divisions into one unit.

“We are hopeful that this organizational change will strengthen the place-based AOD prevention partnerships that BHRS has invested significantly in.  And also leverage the framework and learnings that the Tobacco Education Coalition and the Tobacco staff have furthered to drive reductions in tobacco use in communities across San Mateo County,” said Srija Srinivasan, Health System Interim Deputy Chief.

Learn More about this in our newsletter!


Feds Help County Expand Addiction Services: First Waiver in State to use Federal Dollars for Extended Treatment of Substance Abuse

San Mateo County is the first in California to receive a waiver from the federal government to expand treatment for individuals on Medi-Cal struggling with drug addiction.

Currently, people with substance use disorders with Medi-Cal health coverage have limited treatment options available, according to a statement by the county Health System’s Behavioral Health and Recovery Services.

Last month, the county was given approval by the state Department of Health Services and federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to create a local “Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery System program.

Medi-Cal beneficiaries in need of treatment will be able to access withdrawal management, short-term residential treatment, intensive outpatient, medication assisted treatment, narcotic treatment service, physician consultation and outpatient services, along with case management and recovery support, according to Clara Boyden, the county’s Alcohol and Other Drug Programs manager.

The program will help remove barriers that can discourage people from getting the services they need. When access to care improves, so does the quality of life for those the program will serve, Kaplan said.

– See more at:

Honoring Our Journey Through The Power of Digital Storytelling

Witness the stories of courageous individuals and celebrate their recovery journey at Seeing Through Stigma’s Honoring Our Journey Through The Power of Digital Storytelling on May 14 from Noon – 3:00PM. This event is part of Mental Health Awareness Month and will be held at Heart and Soul, Inc (205 Industrial Road, Ste. 205 in San Carlos). For more information, contact Cardum Harmon at

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Join us at one of the Mental Health Awareness events throughout San Mateo County as we stand up and work together to help everyone live a healthy life. Visit to view a list of events and their locations.

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