Mental health services are a hot topic in Pierce County and the League of Women Voters of Tacoma-Pierce County wants to broaden the discussion.
The group conducted a 61-page study in March analyzing specific problems and what improvements can be made.
On Thursday, it will host a public forum to talk about what mental health services are available, how they can be improved and whether the county should adopt new revenue sources to help fund services.
The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 621 Tacoma Ave. S.
Panelists will include Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy; state Rep. Laurie Jinkins, D-Tacoma; Bea Dixon, executive director of Optum RSN; and Marianne Clear, mental health court coordinator for Pierce County Superior Court.
Also on the panel will be Dr. Jamie Jenkins, specialist in emergency medicine at St. Joseph Medical Center; and Bob Winslow, president of National Alliance for Mental Illness Pierce County.
Ruth Ann Hatchett, president of the League of Women Voters of Tacoma-Pierce County, said the study found mental health service challenges stem from:
▪ Problems at Western State Hospital in Lakewood.
▪ Lack of funding for case management and treatment.
▪ Low federal reimbursement for practitioners, who are unable to accept Medicaid or Medicare clients.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653