Maryland Unveils Network of Care for Behavioral Health Sites Statewide

May 30, 2008
Network of Care

CUMBERLAND, MD. – The Maryland Network of Care for Behavioral Health (http://maryland.networkofcare.org) was launched statewide May 30 before an audience of almost 400 Maryland mental-health consumers during the On Our Own of Maryland Annual Conference at the Rocky Gap Lodge and Golf Resort. The sites were unveiled during a news conference featuring Dr. Brian Hepburn, executive director of the Maryland Mental Health Administration, and Daryl Plevy, director of the Maryland Mental Health Transformation Grant, which funded the statewide rollout.

The Network of Care for Behavioral Health is a breakthrough Web solution for individuals, families and agencies concerned with mental and emotional wellness. The Network of Care for Behavioral Health is an online information place that provides critical information, communication and advocacy tools with a single point of entry. It ensures there is “No Wrong Door” for those navigating the system of behavioral health services, those working to avoid the need for formal services, and those ready to transition out of the behavioral health system.

Regardless of where individuals, families and agencies begin their search for assistance with behavioral health issues, the Network of Care for Behavioral Health ensures they will find what they need. The new Web site will enable people to find the right service at the right time; educate themselves about their issues; understand current policy initiatives and advocate directly to elected officials, and better manage their affairs, interactions and important records.

The Network of Care for Behavioral Health provides a comprehensive Service Directory for each of Maryland’s 23 counties as well as the City of Baltimore, putting people in touch with the right services at the right time. The Network of Care also provides easy-to-search libraries and vital information about specific disorders, pending legislation and advocacy, as well as daily news articles from around the world concerning behavioral health, developmental disabilities and substance abuse.

To increase accessibility and accommodate the Network of Care’s users, the site’s innovative technology provides near-universal access, regardless of literacy or income level, to Web-based services through a text-only version of the site and other adaptive technologies. The site is fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Network of Care also provides key mental-health information in multiple languages.

Service providers can share challenges and ideas, as well as create powerful new mechanisms to better serve people with mental illness, developmental disabilities and substance abuse, by embracing the Network of Care’s communication tools such as message boards and community calendars. Service providers can even build their own free Web sites in the For Providers section.