UNH Receives Grant to Increase Behavioral Health Workforce in New Hampshire

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

DURHAM, N.H. – Thanks to a four-year $1.9 million grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 116 master’s level social work and occupational therapy students at the University of New Hampshire will receive $10,000 stipends for behavioral health care training that will get them into medically underserved areas in New Hampshire and beyond.

Part of the College of Health and Human Services’ Pathways to Behavioral Health Careers project, the focus is to put more professionals where they are needed to work in integrated primary and behavioral health care. The program will result in a 20 percent annual increase in the number of master’s level social work clinicians and occupational therapists who work in rural areas and with underserved populations in behavioral health settings, improving the quality of care to individuals with behavioral health concerns; including children and youth with emotional and behavioral challenges, individuals with substance use disorders, and individuals with mental illnesses.

“This project builds on efforts already underway nationally and in the state, breaks down the arbitrary walls between physical and behavioral health, allows for innovations in treatment, demonstrated cost savings, and improves the lives of New Hampshire citizens,” said William Lusenhop, clinical assistant professor of social work and director of the grant.

The University of New Hampshire is a flagship research university that inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top ranked programs in business, engineering, law, health and human services, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. UNH’s research portfolio includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space.