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DMHSAS Numbered Memo Series 2008-05

Date: June 5, 2008

Title: Expenditure and Revenue Reports
Update to DDES Memo 2007-04 and DCFS Memo 2007-06

To: Listserv

For: Area Administrators/Human Service Area Coordinators
Bureau Directors/Section Chiefs
County Departments of Community Programs Directors
County Departments of Developmental Disabilities
Services Directors
County Departments of Human Services Directors
County Departments of Social Services Directors
County Mental Health Coordinators
Tribal Chairpersons/Human Services Facilitators

From: John Easterday, Administrator
Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services

Subject: MH/AODA functional screen - Funding for implementation with CSP

Document Summary

Funding is available to assist counties develop the capacity for implementation of the Mental Health and Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (MH/AODA) functional screen to determine the functional need for Community Support Programs (CSP). This memo describes how to request these funds and the expectations for their use. Applications must be received by July 15, 2008.


The MH/AODA functional screen is the mandatory screen to determine eligibility for Comprehensive Community Services (CCS) and the Community Options Program (COP) for people with severe mental illness since 2005. The screen also determines eligibility for CSP programs although the mandatory use of the screen for CSP has not yet been required.

Advantages of using the functional screen

To encourage county agencies and their sub-contractors to use the screen for adults participating in CSP, The Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (DMHSAS) is offering a financial incentive. Counties may request up to $7,000 to be used for costs related to the implementation of the web based screen. These funds may be applied toward the cost of computers and/or the cost of training and loss of billable hours for CSP team members. Other documented implementation costs may also be approved.

In conjunction with the Division of Quality Assurance (DQA) the Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services determined that the screen could be used in place of the narrative initial assessment required by HFS 63. The initial care plan may be based on this screen, and the agency is still required to do an in-depth assessment and comprehensive treatment plan per the HFS 63 administrative rules.

Counties utilizing the functional screen have found the results to be useful in the following areas:

  • Prioritizing individuals for admission to CSP based on level of need on the risk page, particularly in the area of hospitalizations and stability of housing status;
  • Ensuring that case load mix is equitable in terms of the intensity of needs reflected by the functional screen for individuals;
  • Providing valuable population information regarding work status, substance use, corrections involvement, and history of trauma.
  • Identifying gaps in service array and community integration in aggregate data.

The Division can also provide extracts of all the functional screen data to counties interested in using strategic items as indicators for Quality Improvement Projects.

A number of counties have been using the screen for admission into CSP and annual recertification of need for the program, for a number of years. These counties find that the screen does reflect the admission criteria as laid out in HFS 63, and is often useful to prevent inappropriate referrals and quantifies HFS 63.08 3 (b) 1 a and b to simplify admissions in this category.

Expectations for counties receiving these funds

Counties receiving these funds must agree to use the functional screen for all new individuals seeking services from the CSP program. In addition, the screen will be completed annually for all ongoing CSP participants. The screening process for ongoing CSP participants is done at the time of their next six month review following the signing of the contract with the Bureau, and then yearly thereafter. Each county must designate a screen lead to receive updated information and communicate it to the others in the agency.

All screeners must complete a web based training course through the UW School of Nursing, Madison. See attachment A for instructions on accessing the on-line training to become a certified screener. Staff can access the training at anytime on-line and Continuing Education Credits are awarded.

Application Process

Attachment B provides a form with the information we need to award funds. The awards will be made on a first come first served basis. Applications must be received by July 15, 2008. We have $20,000 available for this purpose. Therefore we can fund about 3 to 4 counties depending on the submitted budgets. If additional funds become available, DMHSAS may use the response to this memo to fund additional counties. Counties that received funds in 2005 or 2007 to implement the screen in their CSP programs are not eligible to apply for these additional funds.


Please print out Attachment B and obtain the required signatures. Mail your applications to:
Morgan Groves
Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services
P. O. Box 7851, Madison, WI 53707-7851 by July 15, 2008.
For questions regarding this opportunity, please call Morgan Groves at 608-261-9312 or e-mail her at the address listed below.

E-mail address:  
Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services
1 West Wilson Street, room 850
P.O. Box 7851
Madison, Wisconsin 53707-7851
Telephone: (608) 261-9312 or FAX: (608) 261-7800

Attachment A: Instructions for accessing the MH/AODA screen training (PDF, 48 KB)
Attachment B: Application Form


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