NWF Health celebrates 10 years as behavioral health managing entity
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10th anniversary champagne bottle balloon pop
'We are overseeing the largest community mental health and substance abuse expansion in Florida history.'

NWF Health Network is celebrating its 10th anniversary as the Behavioral Health Managing Entity serving northwest Florida.

NWF is a lead agency for child protection and behavioral health, including mental health and substance abuse services.

The Legislature began transitioning to a community-based substance abuse and mental health services model in 2008, creating private Behavioral Health Managing Entities (BHME).

Selected as a BHME, NWF serves 18 counties in Florida Judicial Circuits 1, 2, 3 and 14. The group’s primary role is to maintain an integrated network of private providers to ensure optimal access to and delivery of quality services for all residents within its operating area.

Over the past 10 years, NWF has implemented and monitored innovative programs to address mental health and substance abuse needs at community scale, working closely with partners to deliver optimal care coordination, opioid treatment, three Mobile Response Teams, 10 community Action Teams, a Centralized Receiving Facility, family intensive treatment and early psychosis programs.

The group’s approach leverages relationships with local hospitals, schools, and law enforcement agencies to help individuals and families recover and thrive.

“As we mark this milestone, we want to thank our staff, providers, partners and clients for their trust and support,” said NWF Health CEO Mike Watkins. “We are overseeing the largest community mental health and substance abuse expansion in Florida history. We look forward to improving the health and well-being of northwest Floridians for many years to come.”

Since its launch as a BHME, NWF has expanded its provider network and funding, from overseeing and contracting $46 million annually in 2013 to nearly $112 million in behavioral health infrastructure and services today.

Despite expanding, NWF still provides services in the community while maintaining administrative costs of less than 2%.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of FloridaPolitics.com, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


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