Rep. Katko Announces More Than $400K in Federal Funds to Expand Training Opportunities for Behavioral Health Professionals in CNY

August 11, 2020
Press Release

SYRACUSE, NY— U.S. Rep. John Katko (NY-24) today announced $414,100 in federal funding for Helio Health, Inc. in Syracuse, a behavioral health provider that treats patients with mental health disorders and helps individuals recover from substance use disorders.

The funding is available through the Health Resources Services Administration’s (HRSA) Opioid Impacted Family Support Program (OIFSP), a program that aims to increase the number of training opportunities for behavioral health professionals, especially for those working in underserved areas. Helio Health will use these funds to bolster its Join It, Live It, Be It program, which creates training opportunities for Central New Yorkers seeking to work in behavioral health as a certified volunteer or counselor.

“Today, I’m pleased to announce Helio Health, has received more than $400,000 in federal funds through the Health Resources Services Administration’s (HRSA) Opioid Impacted Family Support Program,” said Rep. Katko. “In Syracuse, Helio Health provides crucial treatment to patients with mental health disorders and helps individuals recover from substance use disorders. This funding will allow this organization to expand its Join It, Live It, Be It program, which creates training opportunities for Central New Yorkers seeking to work in behavioral health as a certified volunteer or counselor. With many Central New Yorkers struggling to deal with the emotional toll of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, I believe it is more important than ever that we increase access to quality mental health and substance use disorder treatment services. As Co-Chair of the bipartisan Mental Health Caucus, I will continue working across party lines to strengthen substance use disorder treatment and mental health programs by addressing our community’s shortage in behavioral health professionals.”

“Helio Health developed a transformative agenda to help communities recover from COVID-19 through improved access to behavioral health services and supports, offering  a challenge to Join It, Live It, Be It, this funding will allow us to expand the availability of training and after training apprenticeship opportunities for people seeking to work in behavioral health as a certified peer or counselor, through the Helio Health Training Institute,” said Helio Health President and CEO, Jeremy Klemanski.

In Congress, Rep. Katko has consistently supported funding increases for the HRSA. Most recently, he supported passage of bipartisan legislation that authorized a $195 million increase for HRSA. Serving as Co-Chair of the bipartisan Mental Health Caucus, Rep. Katko has worked to increase the number of mental healthcare professionals practicing in underserved communities. Last year, he introduced The Mental Health Professionals Workforce Shortage Loan Repayment Act of 2019, bipartisan legislation that authorizes a loan repayment program within HRSA for those who work in an area with a lack of accessible care.

 

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