Working to improve the care of older adults with behavioral health needs

The Maryland Mental Health and Aging Coalition connects representatives from service agencies, behavioral health providers, state agencies, consumers, and family groups to ensure that Maryland’s older adults with behavioral health disorders have access to a full range of services that meet their unique needs, no matter their residence or financial circumstances.

For more than 20 years, the Coalition has advanced education, facilitated network development, and led public policy and advocacy initiatives to benefit older adults with behavioral health needs and their care partners. The Coalition has successfully advocated for legislation to prohibit referrals to an unlicensed assisted living facility and from making referrals only to facilities in which an individual has a financial relationship, to authorize the use of supported decision-making agreements with a goal of preventing the need for guardianship, and to require the Department of Health to develop and implement a public awareness campaign to encourage the use of Mental Health Advanced Directives.

In addition to successful legislation, the Coalition has successfully established budget language to review medication misuse in residential settings, Maryland’s Preadmission Screening and Resident Review (PASRR) program and recommendations for improvement, and a report detailing the anticipated cognitive and behavioral health needs of Maryland’s aging population and a plan to meet those needs.

Our Coalition welcomes anyone interested in joining our quarterly meetings. For more information on the Maryland Mental Health and Aging Coalition please contact:

Margo Quinlan
Director of Child and Older Adult Policy

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