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By John Blodget
The Western News 

Teamwork promises to help improve mental health care

Lincoln County Part 1

 

October 18, 2018

John Blodget, The Western News

Amy Fantozzi, left, manager of Lincoln County's behavioral health network, and Jennifer McCully, the county's public health manager, stand in McCully's office in Libby Wednesday, July 11. The two have been key in helping the county respond to the closing of Western Montana Mental Health Center's Libby office at the start of 2018. Their efforts have included leading a coalition of local mental health care and related service providers.

When someone suffering a mental health crisis arrived in the emergency room at Cabinet Peaks Medical Center in Libby, staff there often called Western Montana Mental Health Center, which would send a mental health professional to evaluate the case and determine a course of action.

But that practice ended at the start of 2018, following the Missoula-based center's announcement that it would close its offices in Libby and Dillon. The reason: steep budget cuts made in Montana's special legislative session last November.

The news sent public health staff and health care providers in Libby...



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