Free Webinar for Peer Specialists

Free Webinar

The Role of Peer Specialists in Promoting Competitive Employment for the People they Serve

March 14, 2013

2:00 – 3:30 PM

Please join us for the third in a series of free webinars discussing the roles of Peer Specialists in today’s mental health systems. March’s webinar – sponsored by the Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities and the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse – focuses on the roles that Peer Specialists can play in promoting the competitive employment goals of the people with mental health conditions with whom they work.

The four-part free webinar series – jointly funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) – is designed to provide a national platform for the discussion of roles that peer specialists and peer-run programs can play in offering the supports and services that individuals may need to participate more fully in the day-to-day lives of their communities.

The third webinar, March, 14, 2013, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Eastern Time, will focus on the ways Peer Specialists can assist individuals in gaining meaningful employment. The webinar, to be presented by Richard Baron, Director of Knowledge Translation at the Temple University Collaborative, and will draw on research in this area, conducted over the years by The Temple University Collaborative. Mr. Baron will be joined by other experts in this area, including Nicole Darr, Lori Whitecraft, Carol Ward-Colasante, and Fred McLaren. The webinar will include discussion of training available to peer specialists who are interested in helping people return to work, as well as the ways to help people within a Medicaid-funded peer specialist program.
To register for the seminar, go to:  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Please note the topic of the next webinar in this series:

May 2013 – Certified Peer Specialists: Connecting to Spiritual Communities

We will notify you of the specific dates and times of the May webinar. Please direct any questions you have to Christa Burkett at or (267) 507-3811.

South Central PA HCQU Shares Upcoming Activities

On January 23, 2013, the South Central PA HCQU hosted the regional PPC meeting in our office. Robyn VanEerden presented a 2 hour training on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Please check out our upcoming events:

  • On March 25, 2013, we will host our next Provider Nurses Meeting. During our last meeting on January 14th, we presented a mini training on the Linx Management System for treatment of GERD. Other discussions included the advances in gene therapy, Type 3 Diabetes, catheterizations in the home, PEG tube care in the home, colonoscopies for ID/DD individuals and provider procedures for emergency situations.

  • Beginning April 1, 2013 and continuing every Monday for 6 weeks we will be presenting the Dual Diagnosis Series in Chambersburg, Pa.

  • April 16, 2013 from 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM, we will hold another Legal Seminar at the Child Welfare building in Mechanicsburg. Christa Aplin, Senior Attorney with Jan L. Brown Associates out of Harrisburg will present information on wills, living wills, trusts, special needs trusts, guardianship and Powers of Attorney, both financial and medical. More details will be released very soon.

Scranton Area Mental Health Support Group

Scranton Area MH Group Flyer_2-12-13The Scranton Area Mental Health Support Group meets every other Saturday at 1:00 p.m. beginning February 16, 2013 at the Advocacy Alliance’s Recovery Center, 825 Jefferson Avenue, Scranton, PA.

This support is offering open discussion and support for all mental health conditions.  Participants are also able to learn about resources available in the community.

Families are welcome.  Open to individuals age 18 and over.  Please call 570-558-0381 for more information.

Standing Up for Mental Health on Facebook

539701_10151326829037615_1266624763_nSara Johnson wrote us to say that as a result of the “Stand Up for Mental Health” campaign, she Stood Up on Facebook and disclosed that she has bipolar disorder to her family members and friends. Her story is amazing on so many different levels. First, it takes a huge amount of courage to do that. She says it was like a breath of fresh air. Secondly, she’s a social worker, who for years told her clients to stand up to stigma yet hid her own mental illness. That’s how strong mental health stigma is. That’s why it must be broken. If you are waiting for everyone to be educated about mental illness and then hoping they will accept you with open arms, it’s likely to be a very long wait.

End mental illness stigma today.

  • Don’t let it pollute your mind.

  • Don’t tolerate it in your life.

  • Stand Up to stigma.

  • Stand Up for Yourself.

  • Stand Up for Mental Health.

Stand Up for Mental Health Campaign Update

It has been two weeks since we launched the campaign. And it’s really resonating with people. So far, nearly 1,000 people have joined the campaign. We, and 46 Million Americans with mental illness, need you to stand up. Together, we can do this. If you have a website or blog, please put a campaign button on it. (Buttons are available for parents of children with mental illness and mental health professionals and organizations too.) We also have covers and images for Facebook, Twitter and Google+. No matter what mental health condition you have, let others know about the “Stand Up for Mental Health” campaign, that stigma is wrong and will no longer be tolerated in your life. And if you have a “Stand Up for Mental Health” story to share, write us at: standup AT

Your Thoughts

You can share your thoughts about Sara Johnson’s story. We invite you to participate by commenting and sharing your feelings, experiences and knowledge on the HealthyPlace Facebook page.

PA Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative (PAYSPI) Announces High School PSA Contest

The PA Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative (PAYSPI) is pleased to announce the First Annual PSA Contest for Youth Suicide Prevention!

Youth often have more impact on one another than adults. PAYSPI is using this power to engage youth in developing public service announcements (PSAs) focused on suicide awareness and prevention. These messages may be directed at other youth, school personnel, parents, or other community members.

Please help us disseminate this information to local high schools and encourage high school students you know to get involved in this important effort to help reduce youth suicide.

A few details:

  • Each school may only submit one entry per category. We encourage you to consider a local challenge within your school to help identify the best submission per category.

  • Each submission must be reviewed by a mentor at the school. This may be a teacher, guidance counselor, school nurse, school administrator, or the SAP team coordinator. Mentors will help to provide some guidance on appropriateness of content (there are national media guidelines), and then sign off on the application once the final product is approved.

  • Deadline for submissions: April 1, 2013. Entries must be received by this date.

Details about the contest on, including official rules, a printable flyer, and the application form. More information about the PA Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative is available on as well.

Alarming Financial Scam Preying on Our Senior Citizens

This scam seeks to get bank account and other information from seniors by promising a prescription drug plan for $299.  Please share this information widely and contact the Senior Medicare Patrol at CARIE with any questions at 1-800-356-3606.

Protect yourself, your older loved ones and friends by reading the ScamWire from the PA Senior Medicare Patrol below.

ScamWire Jan 2013 $299 Drug Scam (PDF file)

For more information, please check out the Center for Advocacy for the Rights and Interests of the Elderly (CARIE). CARIE is a non-profit organization, based in Philadelphia, that has been dedicated to improving the quality of life for vulnerable older people since 1977.

Another great resource for caregivers is Caregivers GPS.  The Elder’s Advocate, will help you think about the options you have and the decisions that may need to be made as your loved one’s care needs increase.

Self Determination…What is it?

Self Determination…What is it?

Basically, Self Determination is knowing what you want, knowing how to get it, knowing your strengths and weaknesses and being able to ask for help when needed.  Self Determination is important for you, for me and for all people including those with disabilities.

Can you imagine a life where your opinion about how your life should proceed is not valued?

A great tool…

The National Gateway to Self-Determination Web Portal, a clearinghouse on resources, training, and information on Self-Determination. This site provides a single access for self-advocates, professionals, policy-makers and the general public on the current best practices and evidence-based activities in enhancing self-determination in the lives of people with developmental and intellectual disabilities, as well as any individual.

How to use it…

Click on RESOURCE GUIDE to search by age, topic, type of self determination, product type and more! There is a wealth of information online ready to use at home, school or in trainings. The LINKS section provides resources on more Self Determination topics and is also categorized by topic.

National Gateway to Self-Determination Web Portal

Medicare Questions Answered

From the Office of Rep. Frank Farina, D-115th District, Lackawanna and Wayne Counties

Medicare questions answered in my constituent service office:

Selecting the right Medicare coverage is confusing for many seniors and their families.

I have arranged for counselors from APPRISE, the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) to offer free advice in my constituent service office twice a month, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. the first and third Mondays, beginning Feb. 4.

My office is located at 423 Main St., Eynon.

If you have questions about Medicare, Medicaid, Medigap or long-term care insurance, you should speak with one of these specialists.

These counselors can answer all of your questions and even help you file Medicare appeals.

Drop-ins are welcome during the scheduled times, but appointments are preferred.

Please call my office at (570) 876-1111 to schedule a time.

As always, if there is any way my staff or I may assist you, please contact me by phone, website or drop by the office at 423 Main St., Eynon.