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McLean County aims to boost mental health services for local teens

kids mental health

BLOOMINGTON (WEEK) - Providing teenagers with mental health services is considered a pressing need in McLean County, and the government is ready to provide funding to help organizations meet that need.

The Behavioral Health Coordinating Council is accepting applications for potential providers to set up McLean County's Adolescent Intensive Outpatient Services Program.

McLean County, Normal, and Bloomington city governments are providing half of the $500,000 funding to establish the program during the first year, while United Way of McLean County is contributing the other half.

Outpatient treatment for behavioral health needs are said to have lower costs than residential or inpatient treatment programs.

"Further, intensive outpatient programs have been shown to lead to better recovery outcomes and allow adolescents to remain in their home, work with services within their community, include family in services and treatment planning, and improve functioning in their natural environments," the council said in a document requesting program proposals.

The program will address the needs of McLean County youths, ages 13-18, who are at risk of, or have a history of, being institutionalized for psychiatric treatment.

The council is accepting applications until March 20. Participating agencies must be able to start the program by June 1.

More information can be found at www.mcleancountyil.gov.

Howard Packowitz

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