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Joan Erney to Retire as CEO of Community Behavioral Health

PHILADELPHIA — The Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (DBHIDS) today announced that Joan Erney will retire as chief executive officer of its Community Behavioral Health (CBH) division effective ‪December 31, 2019.

Behavioral Health Commissioner David T. Jones said CBH’s chief operating officer, Donna Bailey, has been named interim CEO of CBH effective ‪January 1, 2020. Commissioner Jones, who is CBH’s board chair, said the board of directors will conduct a search for a permanent CEO next year.

CBH administers the Medicaid behavioral health managed care program, HealthChoices, on behalf of the City of Philadelphia effectively managing the behavioral health care coverage of more than 700,000 Philadelphians. CBH’s vast network of nearly 200 publicly-funded addiction and mental health treatment provider agencies operates at 700 sites across the city. Erney has led CBH since 2013.

“We thank Joan tremendously for her personal commitment and dedication to leading CBH’s growth and success,” Commissioner Jones said. “Joan’s tireless efforts and leadership have resulted in CBH’s many notable accomplishments and will have a lasting impact on CBH’s continued operation as a health plan within our Department recognized for putting Philadelphians with behavioral health challenges at the center of its work.”

Under Erney’s leadership, CBH fostered strategies for cross-system collaboration working extensively with all of the child-serving and human services systems in the city. As a result, CBH was successful in expanding the use of evidence-based interventions in behavioral health care delivery and bolstering the availability of community-based services. CBH also increased the use of trauma-informed care, strengthened services for individuals with serious mental illness, created tobacco-free psychiatric and drug treatment settings and embedded behavioral health clinicians into the city’s health centers with Erney at the helm.

As Philadelphia’s opioid crisis grew, CBH played a critical role in reducing barriers to treatment, expanding addiction services and impacting prescribing practices under Erney. Her accomplishments leading the organization also include reducing the number of children in residential placement, boosting services for children on the autism spectrum and strengthening school-based behavioral health services.

Erney said: “I am honored to have been entrusted with leading this unique organization. The tremendous leadership within DBHIDS and the CBH board of directors have provided the support for CBH to not only work effectively but to thrive and continue to grow. Equally as important, working with the extraordinary staff at CBH has been a great joy and a tremendous professional accomplishment on which to end my career.”

Erney continued: “My goal as CEO was not only to have us meet the behavioral health care demands of Philadelphia but to do so with integrity and excellence. It has been my great privilege to work so closely with our dedicated provider network over the past six years. I am proud of the work we have accomplished together to create a robust continuum of high-quality services to help Philadelphians with behavioral health challenges achieve recovery.”

It was during Erney’s tenure that the number of Philadelphians eligible to receive behavioral health care coverage through CBH ballooned to an all-time high of more than 700,000. Chief Operating Officer Bailey worked closely with Erney on making infrastructure adjustments at CBH to meet that burgeoning demand.

Bailey said when she becomes interim CEO she plans to build on the successes CBH accomplished under Erney and ensure that the treatment experience of those struggling with substance use disorder and mental health challenges in Philadelphia “drives our work.” After serving as an executive team member of CBH for the past six years, she’ll take the helm as CBH begins working with its provider agencies to shift from a fee-for-service payment model to value-based behavioral health care.

“We have an incredible team at CBH that does all of the heavy lifting every day,” Bailey said. “I am focused on ensuring that CBH operations continue without interruption during this time of transition. And I am honored to help lay the groundwork for our next leader’s success by serving as a bridge that allows the board of directors the time to create a clear and shared vision of CBH’s future and conduct a thoughtful search process.”

Bailey’s distinguished career in executive management includes twice serving as an assistant managing director for the City of Philadelphia. Erney’s retirement from CBH will culminate over 30 years of experience she amassed in the behavioral health field including her leadership roles at the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the state Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services.

Philadelphia Autism Project, CBH Host City Hall Art Show

The Philadelphia Autism Project, housed at the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute, will host an art exhibit at Philadelphia City Hall to highlight individual experiences of Philadelphia and what this city means to them.  The art show is also an opportunity to increase autism awareness and celebrate neurodiversity.

This Art in City Hall exhibit, “Philadelphia: A Spectrum of Experiences,” will be hosted in collaboration with DBHIDS through Community Behavioral Health (CBH), the Office of Councilman-At-Large Derek Green, and the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Arts, Culture, and the Creative Economy.

“I’m excited to partner with the Philadelphia Autism Project for this year’s art exhibition, ‘Philadelphia: A Spectrum of Experiences,’” said Councilman Green. “This showcase gives people a one-of-a-kind opportunity to step in to the talented and remarkable minds of those with autism and other intellectual disabilities, and experience the world through their eyes, hands, and thoughts. I look forward to ongoing collaborations with the Philadelphia Autism Project as we continue to promote autism awareness and work toward the ultimate goal of total inclusivity for all.”

The art exhibit will be open to the public on the fourth and fifth floors of City Hall from March 12 to April 27, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The opening celebration will be held on Tuesday, March 13, from 5-7 p.m. at City Hall.

The goal of the Philadelphia Autism Project is to support and connect individuals and families living with, and affected by, autism spectrum disorder in Philadelphia through resources and innovative programs. The Philadelphia Autism Project is a citywide initiative supported through the Office of Councilman-At-Large Derek S. Green and conducted in partnership with the DBHIDS. For more information about the Philadelphia Autism Project visit www.phillyautismproject.org, Facebook.com/phillyautism, and on Twitter at @phillyautism.

2016 Provider Satisfaction Survey Is Available

Each year, as part of the Performance Evaluation Performance Summary required by the State, CBH produces a Provider Satisfaction Survey (PSS) for its network of providers. The PSS is open from the end of November until the beginning of January each year. The survey is available on Survey Monkey and can be completed by any employee that works for a provider in our network. Each year we review overall results in the CBH Quality Council and present a summary of our findings at the Executive Directors Meeting. Survey results are also reviewed with individual CBH departments to analyze results, identify trends, and create action items to address areas of concern. The action items identified from the 2016 survey have been included in the Provider Satisfaction Survey Summary document.

Included are a few general facts about the PSS:

  • Total Number of Questions: 48
  • Average time to complete survey: 20 minutes
  • Format of survey: General questions first, followed by department specific questions
  • Order of Survey: General questions, Member Services, Provider Relations, Clinical, Claims, Quality, Compliance, NIAC, PEAR/ Pay for Performance
  • Responses can be anonymous, but we encourage providers to self-identify so that we may follow up with providers with specific concerns.

Bluebirds Flying Arts Fest

Come join us for a day of creativity and fabulous arts presentations. The event will highlight peer art, making collages, pillowcase painting, mandalas, poetry, and more. Presenters will be Sharon Wise, an artist extraordinaire from Washington, D.C., and Hikmah Gardiner, a beloved advocate  and former DBHIDS employee.

Lunch will be provided. A $10 donation is suggested. Presented by Gayle Bluebird & Associates. The event is hosted by DBHIDS.

Kleckner J. Charles

Kleckner J. Charles

Community Relations

Community Relations

Division of Community Behavioral Health (CBH)

Division of Community Behavioral Health (CBH)

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Community Behavioral Health (CBH)

Community Behavioral Health (CBH)