Mental Health Performance Measures Project
The Mental Health Performance Measures Project was a joint effort by the Alaska Mental Health Board (AMHB) and the State of Alaska Division of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities (DMHDD [DMHDD is now subsumed under the new Division of Behavioral Health]). The overall purpose of this project was to identify and implement performance measures for public community mental health centers in Alaska. Through prior efforts of the AMHB and DMHDD, a set of measures had been developed. The next phase of the project was to pilot these measures at a number of mental health agencies throughout Alaska. The Alaska Comprehensive and Specialized Evaluation Services (ACSES) of the Behavioral Health Research and Services program was hired by the State of Alaska for the piloting of these measures. This pilot phase consisted of ACSES staff training mental health agency staff in the implementation of the instruments. These mental health agency staff members then collected data from their regular clients and submitted these data to ACSES for analyses. Data were collected twice from each client over a 3-month period. Data submitted did not include any identifying information about the client, but instead only included a unique identifier established by the DMHDD’s Alaska Recipient Outcome Research Application (ARORA). Through use of this identifier, ACSES was able to insure that duplicate data from the same client was not submitted and to link data for a given client across time.
Based on analyses of these data, ACSES prepared several technical reports and made recommendations about modifications to the pilot instrument. Once the steering committee finalized the performance outcome measures based on the feedback, ACSES assisted in the development of policies and procedures for systemwide implementation of these outcome measures and trained providers statewide on the use of the newly established outcome measures.