Hancock County is considering the formation of a new mental health region comprised of just six counties, in an attempt to direct spending on more transparent and effective care within our local communities. Those six counties include Cerro Gordo, Wright, Pocahontas, Webster, Humboldt, and Hancock. All six counties are part of the County Social Services (CSS) region which up until recently had 22 counties involved. Last month, Winnebago, joined Worth and Kossuth Counties, in disbanding their partnership with CSS and joining Northwest Care Connections, another much smaller region.
Hancock County Supervisor Gary Rayhons discussed mental health region options Monday during the Hancock County Board of Supervisors meeting.
The purpose of consolidating counties into regions was so that money could be pooled to help more mental health cases, however, questions arose as to how effective it really was at helping on a local scale. According to Rayhons, the levy cost to form a new region would be about the same as it has been with CSS.
Hancock County Supervisor Jerry Tlach says it’s not so much the levy cost, but the quality of services that’s most important to citizens.
Discussion on how to proceed will continue. The counties have until November 15, 2020 to notify the State of Iowa of their intent to develop a new mental health region.