—Rep. Wendi Thomas (R-Bucks) has been appointed by House Speaker Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) to the Behavioral Health Commission for Adult Mental Health.
“I want to thank Speaker Cutler for this honor,” Thomas said. “During my tenure in the House, I have committed myself to improving mental health care in the Commonwealth. My goal on the commission is to work statewide to implement changes to improve both access to and reduce the stigma of mental health care.”
The commission will allocate the $100 million to improve mental health services in Pennsylvania that was included in the 2022-23 state budget. It is also expected to take up one of Thomas’ key mental health reforms.
In June, Thomas introduced House Bill 2686
to encourage Collaborative Care Models (CCM) for mental health treatment. Under this system, a care team is led by a primary care provider and includes a consulting psychiatrist and behavioral health care manager. The team cares for a defined group of patients and closely tracks each patient’s progress using an evidence- and measurement-based care plan.
“While this is one idea to improve access to mental health services, by making them available at your family doctor’s office, much work remains to be done,” Thomas said.
Thomas was named a Legislative Champion by Mental Health America (MHA) for 2022, which honors legislators from across the country for their commitment to mental health care reform.