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Mental and Behavioral Health System


Mayor Demings' Seal

Overview from Mayor Demings

We have a crisis in our country’s mental health system, which has never been properly funded for continuum of care and prevention. On a local level, the result of this monumental national failure is thousands of individuals in Orange County with mental health and/or addiction issues who are either on the streets or in prison – two places they definitely should not be.

As a community, we need to do better. On May 18, 2021, Orange County’s Mental Health and Homelessness Division presented a gaps analysis of our mental and behavioral health system. The Orange County Board of County Commissioners and I unanimously agreed for the United Way of Central Florida to convene a group of thought leaders to begin the dialogue on improving our community’s mental and behavioral health system of care, provide recommendations, as well as validate the gaps identified in the preliminary analysis. The culmination of that eight-month effort is a comprehensive report titled Orange County Mental and Behavioral Health System of Care Community Analysis.

On February 22, 2022, the Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved to accept the report. The next steps include creating a implementation team of community stakeholders who will lead Orange County in creating a public, private and philanthropic partnership on addressing the gaps and recommendation within the report.

Orange County Mental and Behavioral Health System of
Care Community Analysis

Download the full report

“This report and its recommendations are only the beginning of a committed process that includes both short- and long-term strategic planning. Most importantly, we must all partner in this endeavor and use everything at our disposal to fix a very broken system.” — Jerry L. Demings, Orange County Mayor

“The contents of this report reflect an examination of some of the greatest opportunities and challenges facing the mental and behavioral health landscape in Orange County. With sincere gratitude to the expertise of Dr. Lauren Josephs of Visionary Vanguard Group this research is presented with hopes of changing the future for Orange County residents related to the availability and accessibility of mental health services whenever and wherever they may need them.” — Jeffery Hayward, President and CEO of Health of Florida United Way