Anchorage, Alaska (November 15, 2018) – During their regular meeting on November 14, 2018, the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority board of trustees directed $4.8M in funds to program related services in Alaska. Trustees approved $1.1M to expand and improve the women’s mental health unit at Hiland Mountain Correctional Center and allocated an additional $3.7M for other program investments supporting Trust beneficiaries.

“The funding decisions made today will have a significant and positive impact on Mental Health Trust beneficiaries,” said board chair Mary Jane Michael.  “These one-time expenditures will go a long way in improving overall access to necessary supports and services.”

Hiland Mountain Grant

In a partnership with the Alaska Department of Corrections (DOC), trustees approved a grant of $1.1M to DOC to help expand and improve the Women’s Mental Health Unit at Hiland Mountain, recognizing the need for more timely access and improved care for the approximately 200 female Trust beneficiaries served at the facility each year.  Trust funds, along with matching funds from DOC, will support this remodel, forming a more therapeutic environment, increasing capacity, and creating a safe space for those requiring acute detoxification.

Additional Program Related Investments

Recognizing existing gaps in the continuum of care for beneficiaries, trustees also approved the allocation of up to $3.7M for two key programs: crisis stabilization services and peer support organizations.

  • Crisis stabilization services help deescalate individuals experiencing a mental health crisis in a secure and professionally managed environment, and can lower rates of emergency room or psychiatric hospital admissions.
  • Beneficiary directed peer support organizations offer drop-in and community based services for Trust beneficiaries, and are an important link in the continuum of care.

Trust staff will work with partners to further develop these investment options, and will present final funding recommendations for trustee approval at a future date.


Allison Biastock, Chief Communications Officer