Technical Assistance for State Mental Health Agencies


As a part of an umbrella project funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), NASMHPD is coordinating activities to support the provision of high-quality training and technical assistance to representatives from the state mental health system and other designated stakeholders in order to implement, improve, and expand mental health services and supports in communities across the nation, while simultaneously advancing critical SAMHSA goals and priorities.

State and Regional On-Site Training and Technical Assistance

On-site training and technical assistance (T/TA) is provided to states and regional clusters of states to aid these entities in their efforts to plan, implement, and expand quality services within the public mental health system.  Within the parameters of available resources, such T/TA may be provided in a variety of formats, such as:  site visits; policy review and recommendations; strategic planning; and staff training.   A range of topics might be covered via such T/TA, including, for example:  financing; implementing evidence-based program models; improving treatment environments to be more conducive to recovery; training and certification of peer specialists; cross system collaboration; prevention-based practices; and leadership development, to name a few.

How to Request State On-Site T/TA

The TA being requested should be for training or consultation that is:  consistent with the overall goals of the State’s mental health plan; and in alignment with recovery/resiliency-oriented care.

Formal requests for TA must be made by the Commissioner/Director of the State/Territory Mental Health Agency.  Please direct all requests or inquiries to Pat Shea, who can be reached at 703-682-5191 or .

Requests should include the following:

  • Issue/problem to be addressed
  • Type of TA being requested
  • Short and long-term objectives to be met by the TA
  • Follow-up activities that the site will do to implement TA
  • Audience for the TA

Cross-State Knowledge Transfer

There is a tremendous opportunity for knowledge development and application via the sharing of information by and between individuals working in State/Territorial Mental Health Agencies (SMHAs).  Officials working in a particular capacity (e.g., as forensics directors, Children’s MH Directors, etc.) can benefit from spending time with their counterparts in another state that might be achieving very positive outcomes in a particular area.  This T/TA category supports limited travel expenses to facilitate this type of in-person peer-to-peer mentoring.

How to Request Support for Cross-State Knowledge Transfer Activity

Requests will be considered from the following SMHA officials:  Commissioners/Directors; Medical Directors; or representatives to any of the following NASMHPD Divisions:  Legal; Financing & Medicaid; Children, Youth, and Families; Older Adults; and Forensics.  Entities interested in accessing this support should submit a request to Pat Shea, who can be reached at 703-682-5191 or .