Newsroom > DHHS News Release

For Immediate Release
March 27, 2017

Julie Naughton, Public Information Officer, Communications and Legislative Services, (office) 402-471-1695 or (cell) 402-405-7202,

Nebraska Behavioral Health Conference to Take Place April 11-13

Lincoln— A behavioral needs assessment conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Behavioral Health in 2016 has influenced topics and speakers for the 2017 Annual Nebraska Behavioral Health Conference, which DHHS presents this year in partnership with NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, and Orion Healthcare Technology.
The conference takes place April 11-13 at the Lincoln Marriott Cornhusker Hotel. It is open to the public, and the registration cost is $55 for all attendees. Attendees can receive up to 16 continuing education credits for attending the conference.
“Our annual statewide behavioral health conference offers presenters' experience and knowledge to integrate new ideas and to leverage change for Nebraskans,” said Courtney Phillips, chief executive officer of DHHS.
Topics on the agenda include best practices in addressing underage drinking, consumer community building, systems of care, overcoming stigma from serious mental illness and substance use disorders.
The conference is designed for a wide range of attendees, including:

  • Individuals and family members of all ages who utilize behavioral health services
  • Individuals from child and adult-serving agencies, such as mental health, child welfare, justice, and systems for transition-age youth 
  • Educators, advocates, policymakers and legal professionals 
  • Peer support specialists, health and behavioral health providers

“The needs assessment shows that one in five Nebraskans have reported experiencing mental illness within the past year,” said Sheri Dawson, director of the Division of Behavioral Health. “We’re excited to build on the results of this study.  This conference will help us to gain firsthand knowledge from those redefining the behavioral healthcare field. It also encourages Nebraska behavioral health professionals and other interested partners to develop cutting-edge approaches for prompting awareness, prevention, intervention and treatment.”
The Director’s Award will be awarded in four categories: excellence in prevention, excellence in behavioral health treatment, excellence in recovery and resiliency, and excellence in systems of care.

For more information and to register, visit