CNAY Attends A Public Health Approach to Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention Convening

On July 20, 2023, CNAY Senior Program Associate, Tahnee Poafpybitty was invited to attend, A Public Health Approach to Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention National Partner Convening in Arlington, Virginia. The Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC) Injury Center, in partnership with the Association of State and Territorial Officials (AHSTHO), Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), Health Management Association (HMA), and Mental Health America (MHA) who were seeking input on a national Public Health Approach to Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention framework from national partner organizations. 

 Attendees were welcomed by Mike Fraser, Executive Director of ASTHO and key partners, Amy Peeples, the Deputy Director of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, CDC. They explained the need and purpose of the national framework and why the input and support of national partners is critical. 

The background research for the framework was then presented by the board and its partners. Ali Maffey, Vice President of Social and Behavioral Health, ASTHO and Shannon Breitzman the Principal for Health Management Associates presented the draft framework and explained how input will be gathered through a series of group activities during the convening. 

At the tabletop discussion, participants discussed the frameworks representation of public health’s role in mental health promotion and suicide prevention. Discussions included components that resonate or that were missing from the framework. Partnership opportunities they see for public health agencies related to mental health promotion and the role of national partners supporting public health agencies in their efforts.

Brainstorming collaboration continued in small groups providing feedback on key questions. These key questions focused on what is needed to operationalize the framework through an accompanying toolkit, how the framework can reflect equity considerations, and how the framework can include intersections with other public health concerns.

The convening ended with Robin Matthies the Director of Public Health and Behavioral Integration at ASTHO asking to provide any other feedback for the framework. Suggestions on lessons learned within the attendees’ own organizations was reflected. Input and collaborative work from all participants was welcomed and appreciated throughout the entire convening. 

CNAY is honored to have been invited to the convening to provide the input on Native Americans and what is needed for their mental health needs. They were thankful for being able to sit in a room and collaborate with such executives who listen and acknowledge their contributions for discussions.