The County of Los Angeles approved a multimillion dollar expansion of mental health services and funding this week. Because of the $4.4 million in new funding, the County’s Department of Mental Health will be able to operate 10 additional outpatient clinics and one additional specialty clinic that will provide an array of services to older adults, 60 and over.
This specialty clinic is the first of its kind in the County that will focus on older adults. Additionally, it will be staffed with multi-disciplinary clinical treatment professionals who are specifically trained to work with older adults.
Over 60% of the services at the new clinic will be mobile and delivered in community locations that are frequented by older adults, such as senior/public housing complexes, senior centers, and homeless shelters. Frail or homebound older adults with serious mental illness will receive services right in their own homes as part of the new clinic.
According the County mental health experts, many older adults are affected by the stigma of mental illness and chose not seek services from a mental health agency.
It is the goal of the program that increases in accessibility through mobile services, like this new specialty clinic, will enhance the identification and appropriate treatment of older adults with mental illness.