House Republicans Join Governor Lee In Support Of Initiatives For Mental Health And Suicide Prevention

House Republicans joined with the governor this week for an announcement related to three priorities to increase access to mental health treatment and expand suicide prevention efforts across Tennessee.

The proposal calls for $11.2 million in new funding to expand access to services for Tennesseans living with serious mental illness. This investment seeks to cover an additional 7,000 uninsured adults through the state’s Behavioral Health Safety Net program, which provides several essential mental health services. Additionally, it addresses increasing costs at the state’s four regional mental health institutes and ensures that those facilities will continue to provide quality care.

To complement Tennessee’s work in recovery courts and alternative sentencing measures, the governor is also proposing a $3 million investment to the Creating Homes Initiative. Since 2000, this program has created more than 20,000 quality, permanent housing opportunities for those living with mental illness. This new investment will expand recovery housing options for them.

Republican leaders are also working to address the high suicide rate in Tennessee by proposing a $1.1 million investment that will expand the state’s partnership with the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network (TSPN) to establish a new regional outreach model and increase the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services’ efforts to focus on interventions at the community level using evidence-based practices.

We look forward to discussing these important issues with the Administration and advancing legislation that will help those living with critical health needs.