The Bronx-based Health Center Will Provide Behavioral Services to All Ages and Support the Borough’s COVID-19 Recovery

BRONX, New YorkMay 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has awarded VIP Community Services (VIP) a grant of $2 million annually for two years to expand access to behavioral health care.

SAMHSA’s “Expansion Grants” are aimed at increasing access to and improving the quality of behavioral services in organizations like VIP that operate as a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC). CCBHCs provide family-centered integrated services for mental illness and substance use disorders.

This funding will support VIP’s work to expand care to respond to unmet needs among Bronx residents. Residents will have increased access to VIP’s behavioral health services including 24/7 crisis intervention services and care coordination to facilitate wellness and recovery.

“For nearly five decades, VIP has been a staple in the Bronx providing health and wellness to patients across the age spectrum, addiction services, primary care, housing and shelter, and job readiness,” said CEO Debbian Fletcher-Blake. “This SAMHSA award provides resources to allow us to more comprehensively address the behavioral health needs of our community at a time when people need us the most. It could not have been more well-timed.”

New York City’s position as the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States has brought unique challenges to the Bronx including significant disparities in outcomes for African-Americans and Latinos. Simultaneously, substance use disorders continue to wreak havoc on these communities.

“This funding will enable VIP to hire key staff, expand our reach, and improve the health outlook for the borough’s residents—children and adults,” said Chief Clinical Officer Darcia Bryden-Currie.

SOURCE: VIP Community Services