Mr. Sean McHale is honored with the Lackawanna-Susquehanna Behavioral Health/Intellectual Disabilities/Early Intervention Program Advisory Board’s 2023 John J. Baldi Award of Excellence. From Left Mr. Raymond Hayes, Advisory Board Member; Ms. Miki Drutchal, Administrator; Mr. Sean McHale, Award Recipient; Mrs. Susan McHale, Wife; Ms. Cherianne Scala, The Advocacy Alliance

The Lackawanna-Susquehanna Behavioral Health / Intellectual Disabilities / Early Intervention (L-S BH/ID/EI) Program serves more than 13,000 individuals through various providers of behavioral health and intellectual disabilities services.

The program’s service area consists of two Northeastern Pennsylvania counties – Lackawanna and Susquehanna – which have a combined population of more than 255,000 residents.

The L-S BH/ID/EI Program was started in 1967 under provisions of the Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities Act passed by the Pennsylvania Legislature.

Each year, the L-S BH/ID/EI Program spends nearly $93 million in public funds to make sure the behavioral health and intellectual disabilities needs of its service area communities are met.

The program’s primary goal is to facilitate the inclusion and full participation of all persons with behavioral health and intellectual disability needs in their local community.  It organizes itself to proactively address the planning, development, procurement, management, and evaluation of services, thereby enhancing consumer satisfaction and positive personal outcomes.

The L-S BH/ID/EI Program assumes a leadership role in collaboration with individuals, families, advocates, providers and local government to ensure full participation of persons in their communities.

In 2021, the Lackawanna-Susquehanna BH/ID/EI Program in conjunction with the Lackawanna County Suicide Prevention Alliance created a focus group dedicated to “Improving the Hospital Emergency Department Experience” and supporting individuals experiencing a mental health crisis.  The focus group dedicated many hours to the development of a curriculum to educate staff working in hospital emergency rooms, first responders and other community members.  The goal was to develop an introduction to mental illness, build empathy and decrease stigma.The e-Learning Curriculum, “Supporting Individuals with Mental Illness in a Crisis” is complete and available to anyone interested in learning more about this important topic. Please click on the link below to access the e-Learning course! Supporting Individuals with Mental Illness in a Crisis