A new contact list for MMHAG work group chairs can be foundhere
Last week, a consumer forum was held as part of MMHAG’s commitment to shaping a mental health system that is responsive to the consumers and families who actually use its services. While staff has had ongoing meetings with the four consumer advocate groups on the steering committee, we were excited to broaden our scope through this forum of 18 individuals concerned with consumer advocacy.
The goal of this forum and subsequent similar efforts is to sharpen criteria for Work Groups to use in guiding their proposals for change. For example, the Work Group developing a model mental health benefit set can evaluate their direction against the criteria of the potential consumers of these benefits.
Besides engaging in an invigorating discussion, the 18 participants (three of whom joined in from greater Minnesota by phone) filled out a detailed questionnaire covering everything from people’s experience with MMHAG so far to a chance to critique potential questions we’d like to use for broader consumer engagement activities. These questionnaires are currently being analyzed and summarized for use by the Work Groups, to guide their approach to specific action steps. That is, we want to make a considered, continued effort to test Work Group proposals against the opinions of those who directly experience mental health services.
We are especially excited to reach mental health consumers who might not otherwise come into contact with opportunities for consumer input into the process. As criteria are further honed based on what we learn from consumer advocates, consumers, and their families, we will then test the criteria through several mental health consumer groups, to see whether we’re on track in representing what people want and need from their mental health system. If you would like to offer input to the Work Groups, a contact list will be posted on the website.