There could soon be a mental health care network operating in the southeast corner of Iowa.
Representatives of seven counties (Lee, Des Moines, Henry, Louisa, Van Buren, Keokuk, & Washington) have been meeting for months to come up with a solution to the state's plan to regionalize services.
The result is Southeast Iowa Link (SEIL).
SEIL would oversee mental health care services for non-Medicaid residents in the seven counties. Those covered by Medicaid would receive care through the state.
One of Lee County's representatives in those talks, CPC Administrator Ryanne Wood, says the 28-E agreement that would officially create SEIL has been finalized by the planning committee.
It is now under review by the seven county attorneys.
Wood says once the language is set, it will need to be approved by each participating county board of supervisors before the state has a chance to review it.
"Once we are a legal entity," says Wood, "we will have bylaws that will dictate the practices, the policy and procedure of our functioning region."
The bylaws are expected to dictate how money would be spent and how programs are selected.
Wood says SEIL would be managed by a Board of Directors and a CEO.
The Board of Directors would consist of one Supervisor from each county (or their designee). The directors would appoint one of their own to be the chairperson.
The chairperson would then appoint the CPC Administrator from his/her county to serve as CEO.
Wood is hopeful that this phase of the process is completed by the end of the calendar year.