Managing Entities Will Decrease Costs, Improve Services Across Florida

For Immediate Release: July 19, 2012
Contact: Erin Gillespie, Press Secretary. (850) 717-4450

Managing Entities Will Decrease Costs, Improve Services Across Florida
Two new organizations will begin administering hundreds of local contracts for substance abuse and mental health services

TALLAHASSEE— Two new Managing Entities opened their doors this month in Florida, joining other areas of the state to cut costs and improve the services available and delivered to those who need substance abuse or mental health treatment.

The Department of Children and Families began contracting with private, nonprofit Managing Entities across the state in order to have one single agency in each region manage dozens of local contracts for substance abuse and mental health services.

“These organizations can provide more efficient and effective services to our clients in need,” said Secretary David Wilkins. “When all of our regions are operating under Managing Entities, we will save $50 million per year and provide treatment to an additional 14,000 people each year.”

The new contracts restrict administrative costs for each Managing Entity and its providers and deliver services more efficiently to clients in need. The savings generated will be allocated back into direct services and the infrastructure needed to support our clients. In addition, new performance measures are being developed to better rate the effectiveness of local substance abuse and mental health programs. These will include measures specific to the outcomes for each client, such as a reduction of symptoms, increased skills and safety, and a quicker response time to provide services to the client.

“Our mission is to maximize our resources in every community and minimize the bureaucracy needed to administer these services,” said Rob Siedlecki, Assistant Secretary of Substance Abuse and Mental Health. “These networks will help ensure that our providers are working together to improve the services to our clients and their outcomes.”

Beginning July 1, Lutheran Services Florida took over the management of provider contracts for substance abuse and mental health services in northeast Florida, while a recently formed provider network, Central Florida Cares, will be administering these services in several counties in central Florida.

Lutheran Services will administer substance abuse and mental health providers in Columbia, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Madison, Suwanee, Taylor, Clay, Duval, Nassau, Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns, Volusia, Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Gilchrist, Levy, Union, Madison and Taylor counties. Central Florida Cares will manage the contracts in Orange, Osceola, Brevard and Seminole counties.

In addition to these two new contracts, the current Managing Entity in southwest Florida, Central Florida Behavioral Health Network, signed an amendment to add three counties to its contract and to bring its administrative costs and board governance in line with the new Managing Entities. Central Florida signed a five-year contract in 2010 that covers Desoto, Manatee, Sarasota, Hillsborough, Charlotte, Hendry, Collier, Glades, Lee, Pasco and Pinellas counties. The new amendment adds Hardee, Highlands and Polk counties under its management.

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