The Alaska Mental Health Board (AMHB) is charged in Alaska Statutes with planning for mental health services in Alaska. This direction encompasses all mental health services, regardless of provider. In Alaska, mental health care is provided by three systems: state supported services, federally supported services, and private services. The AMHB in A Shared Vision II brought together representatives of these three systems and attempted to ensure that the broad directions and goals for mental health care were agreeable to all. The document also addresses the need for integration and coordination among these providers.

Although we recognize the need to address the total service spectrum, A Shared Vision II focuses on the state supported service delivery system. This focus results, in part, from the fact that the only data available to the AMHB has to do with providers and consumers of state supported services. This data is limited; one of the ongoing goals of the AMHB is to assure the development of adequate management information systems that can provide us with timely and reliable data.

In the pages following the Who Do We Serve section, we have collected information about mental health services by service area, in which specific community mental health centers have responsibility. Service availability is not consistent throughout Alaska. We hope that the State of the State tables displaying service availability and capacity will set a context for the goals and actions in the strategic plan part of this document.