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NAMI Volusia/Flagler/St.Johns Acronyms / Definitions List
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CIT - Crisis Intervention Team
Consists of specially trained police offers who are able to recognize and de-escalate possible violent episodes which happen when mentally ill people are in crisis.  An excellent way for mentally ill people to be diverted into needed treatment instead of being arrested.  NAMI members are an essential part of this officer and personnel training.

FACT -  Florida Assertive Community Treatment
Treatment teams ideally consisting of a psychiatrist, social worker, nurse, and other support people who visit and treat mentally ill people out in the community; whatever the need and wherever they live.  This can be at home, in an Assisted Living Facility, etc. These teams are ideally meant to take care of as many as 100 people and were originally set up to treat the most needy of patients, especially those who have just been discharged from a State Hospital. (St. Johns County is the ONLY County in Florida which does not have a FACT team.)

ALF- Assisted Living Facility
A group home for people who need help with daily living, including help with medication, etc. These homes are licensed by the State and have to meet certain standards and criteria, especially if they accept people with mental illness. FACT teams are a big help to people who live in ALFs.

NEFSH - Northeast Florida State Hospital
One of three State hospitals for mentally ill patients left in Florida. At one time there were eight.  NEFSH is located in MacClenny, Florida and serves counties located in Northeast and Central Florida down to Palm Beach County.  NEFSH serves the most severely ill patients and always has a long waiting list.

SMA- Stewart-Marchman Act Behavioral Healthcare

Organization offering outpatient alcohol/drug abuse and mental health treatment and which serves Volusia, Flagler, St. Johns and Putnam counties.

Marchman Act
Legal designation under which anyone in Florida may be involuntarily taken in for evaluation and treatment for alcohol/drug abuse, no longer than 72 hours unless ordered by a court.

Baker Act
Legal designation under which anyone in Florida may be involuntarily taken in for evaluation and treatment for mental illness, no longer than 72 hours unless ordered by a court. Named for State Legislator Maxine Baker who wrote and successfully got the act passed in 1972. Every State has similar laws, just different names.

DCF- Department of Children and Families of Florida
Department set up and funded by the Legislature which is charged with taking care of the needs of those Floridians who need help with daily living.  It is a huge dept. which handles SNAP, (used to be aid for dependent children) adoptions, child abuse and care, etc.  Up until 3 years ago, they also were responsible for alcohol/drug abuse and mental illness which was then termed (ADM)

LSF - Lutheran Services of Northeast Florida
Three years ago, DCF "carved out" or separated treatment for ADM and set it up under the aegis of Lutheran Services.  They are charged with providing those services to 23 counties mostly in Northeast Florida. 

EPIC Behavioral Health (Education/Prevention/Intervention/Counseling)

A treatment center in St. Johns County, mostly for alcohol and drug abuse.  They do have some beds for mentally ill people.  (epicbh.org)

Magellan Healthcare
Magellan Behavioral Healthcare is charged by the State of Florida with treating patients who qualify for Medicaid.  Linda Murphy is an employee of Magellan and can explain the details to us.  I am not sure if they are State wide.

MHA - Mental Health America
MHA is an advocacy group very similar to NAMI but older which was founded in 1950.  MHA originally was and is very helpful to people who have everyday emotional problems which most of us have at some time but which are not severe enough for medical treatment. We call those folks the "worried well".  When states began to close mental hospitals in the 1960's and began to discharge people, MHA was not at all familiar with those who were severely mentally ill and who needed medication and extensive treatment. Because MHA was not really helpful to those families, NAMI was started in Wisconsin in the early 1980's by families who felt they had nowhere to turn for help.

Peer Specialists - A Peer Specialist is a person who has progressed in their own recovery from a mental disorder, alcohol or drug abuse and is willing to self-identify as a peer and work to assist other individuals with those same disorders.  We have several NAMI members who are able to explain to the group just exactly what is involved and what training is required. 

F2F- Family to Family Class
A 12 week course taught by family members who have been specially trained.  This course is aimed mainly at those families who are new to mental illness and is quite comprehensive. All family members can greatly benefit from this course at any time. The course is offered periodically throughout the year.

P2P- Peer to Peer Class
Similar to F2F for those in recovery.  A ten week course taught by specially trained Peers which is a great help to those who are new to their mental illness and who do not have any idea of what to expect. Both F2F and P2P material is up-dated on a regular basis and contains the latest information available and valuable coping skills.

SAMHSA- Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration   (samhsa.gov.)
Federal agency established in 1992. This agency is charged with making substance abuse and mental disorder information, services and research more accessible.

SSI-SSDI   Both of these are quite complicated and we are not able to go into much detail here. We are going to try to arrange for a knowledgeable person to speak to the group. The basics are: 

  • SSI- Social Security Income: SSI is based on NEED and DISABILITY.  Mental illness qualifies as a disability. People who qualify for SSI also qualify for Medicaid Medical Insurance.  Medicaid is paid for by a combination federal/state funding, mostly state. Medicaid pays for most medications.
  • SSDI- Social Security Disability Insurance: SSDI is based on earnings paid into the system, either by the applicant who has worked enough time, or a parent.  It is based on DISABILITY.  SSDI qualifies the applicant for Medicare Medical Insurance which is funded by the federal government. Medicare does not pay for medications without Part D, which is an additional cost to the patient.

SOAR - Outreach/Access/Recovery Technical Assistance
Set up by SAMHSA as tool to make substance abuse and mental disorder information, service and research more accessible to users. This requires at least one day of comprehensive training and is used mainly by those in the mental health field who are charged with qualifying people for SSI and/or SSDI.

Treatment Advocacy Center
An advocacy center which is an off-shoot of NAMI and which concentrates mainly on advocacy and information.  It was begun in 1992 and is run by Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, who was an early member of NAMI and who remains an avid backer. Dr. Torrey is a nationally renowned psychiatrist who has a sister who is mentally ill. He is the author of "Surviving Schizophrenia" (now in its 6th edition) and several other books on mental illness.   Website:  www.treatmentadvocacycenter.org.  Loads of information, especially for those of us who are mainly into advocacy.  To quote Dr. Torrey: "Everywhere you look in the mental illness field, things are broken.  Everything needs to change."

CHAIN- Community Health Action Information Network
A statewide consumer health advocacy organization which is dedicated to improving the health of all Floridians.  CHAIN has been a champion of better treatment for mental illness since its inception.

IBPF- International Bipolar Foundation
Information and advocacy organization based in San Diego.

FLPIC- Florida Partners In Crisis
Partners in Crisis is an organization whose main thrust is to keep mentally ill people out of prisons and into effective treatment.  It was begun by Judge Belvin Perry Jr. in Orlando and does excellent work in advocating for better treatment for mental illness. We all really need to visit this web site and go into the history of this organization. NAMI is one of its original members. 

ABLE ACT OF 2014 - Florida Achieving a Better Life Experience (State Law)
The ABLE ACT allows an individual with a disability that occurred before the age of 26 to save up to $100,000 for their future needs in a tax free account without jeopardizing state and federal benefits.  Those funds count then be used for certain expenses like education, housing, transportation, employment support or health and wellness, enabling the individual to have a higher level of economic independence and hopefully a better quality of life.