In the 2014-2017 Three-Year Program and Expenditure Plan, Merced County described the plan to renovate a building for placement of MHSA staff, administrative staff and other program staff. This plan included utilizing the remaining Capital Facilities funds on hand, as well as exercising the option, pursuant to WIC Code Section 5892(b), to use a portion of Community Services and Supports (CSS) funds for Capital Facilities and Technological Needs (CFTN) projects. The funds transferred are being used to partially fund the building renovation project and to fund the Technological Needs projects related to the electronic health record.
The Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Capital Facilities' building renovation project was held on July 13, 2016 and the renovation is currently in process with a projected completion date of January 2018.
Once the building is renovated, the Plan is to house Mental Health Adult Services, Alcohol and Other Drug Services, Central Intake, Merced Adult Wellness Center, DDP Wellness Center, Medical Services, Quality Improvement, MHSA Administration, Automation/IT Services and Mental Health Administration in the building. An estimated 195 FTE Mental Health staff members will be housed in the building. The co-location of these programs in one central location will facilitate better collaboration and care coordination between programs, ensure softer handoffs between internal and external service providers and create more opportunities for Multi-Dimensional Treatment and joint endeavors as it relates to program development.
Technological Needs funds the department's electronic health record (EHR) application provided by Cerner-Anasazi Software, Inc., which offers secure, real-time, point-of-care client information to service providers, and helps strengthen communication between various service providers, and between providers, consumers and family members. The EHR also supports the appropriate use of medications by helping to reduce incidences of overmedication, allergic reactions, and adverse drug interactions. EHRs reduce costs, duplication of screenings and assessments, and store a much greater quantity of clinical data that can be used for program and outcome evaluation.