Connecting to Care (CtoC) is a non-profit TeleHealth Service Center located in Redding California whose mission is to fill gaps in health care services. The CtoC mission focuses on improving the lives of individuals with mental health issues, special needs, and physical barriers to health resources.
I am writing to give my whole-hearted support for Connecting to Care and the services this outstanding non-profit provides.
The Department of Psychiatry has been providing telepsychiatry services to consumers of Far Northern Regional Center for over a decade and has been collaborating with Connecting to Care for that purpose. Our faculty has a collaborative relationship with the founders of Connecting to Care, who established a program that provides services for FNRC clients in need of specialty psychiatry services not available anywhere in the FNRC service area.
I have experienced firsthand the successes made by consumers when utilizing the Connecting to Care Assistive Technology Services and its positive impact on the following;
- Increased access to self-advocacy opportunities for consumers with the use of Assistive Technology.
- Providing a replicable, state of the art model for employment through the application of technology for specialty populations.
Having worked in telepsychiatry since 1996, I am well aware of the difficulty in designing integrated programs and then maintaining services. They have been easy to set up, yet have had poor sustainability and have come and gone. I am also aware of the need to adapt employment and self-advocacy opportunities to the regional center population and the local service network.
I believe the staff at Connecting to Care has done an exceptional job with this. Suzi Coleman is a gifted administrator who really knows how to make these programs operate successfully in a collaborative manner. She is a collaborator and co-author on an article we wrote entitled, Telepsychiatry for Children with Developmental Disabilities: Applications for Patient Care and Medical Education, accepted for publication in Child Psychiatric Clinics of North America Jan 2011.
In summary I support the Connecting to Care without exception.
Roxy Szeftel MD
Szeftel Medical Group – L.A. Telepsychiatry
Director, Child Psychiatry and Child Psychiatry Training
Telepsychiatry Developmental Disabilities Clinic
Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, UCLA