Behavioral Health in the Dakotas: Panel Discussion

The United States is experiencing an unprecedented mental health crisis for people of all ages. Even before the onset of COVID-19, depression and anxiety rates were rising. Resulting disruptions in routines and relationships over the last 2+ years have pushed these levels higher. Today, we will examine recent data to see the effects on our two states and uncover some of the challenges we face. We will also hear Vawnita Best’s story about accessing behavioral health services and discuss with a panel of experts how we can make positive traction in expanding access to behavioral health for individuals most in need.

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  • Increase awareness of the current state of access to behavioral health services in North and South Dakota
  • Understand barriers patients experience in accessing behavioral health services
  • Discuss options to improve access to behavioral health services
  • Identify opportunities for healthcare systems to build and enhance consistent partnerships with community organizations that benefit patients with behavioral health issues

Panel Members:

Andrea Heronimus
Mental Health Services Program Manager; South Dakota Department of Social Services

Andrew J. McLean, MD, MPH
Clinical Professor and Chair Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences

Heather Brandt
Manager, Behavioral Health Community Supports; North Dakota Department of Health

Vawnita Best

Event Details

  • July 25, 2022
  • 03:00 PM to 04:00 PM

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Event Type

  • Virtual


  • Great Plains Quality Innovation Network



    • Nursing
    • Quality
    • Public Health
    • Community Education
    • Social Workers
    • Mental Health Providers

    Organization Types

    • Long Term Care (LTC)
    • Public Health
    • Healthcare Stakeholder Organization
    • Quality Improvement Organization (QIO)