Dr. Lori Messinger Attends White House Briefing
On September 25, Dr. Lori Messinger, Director of the UNCW School of Social Work, attended a White House briefing on “Addressing the Social Determinants of Health in a New Era: The Role of Social Work Education.” Hosted by the White House Office of Public Engagement and Council on Social Work Education, the briefing explored the role of social work education in contexts of the nation’s shifting demographics and the provision of health care for all, the implications of and expectations for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), national policies for mental health services, and the development of a health care workforce to meet the needs of the nation.
The event featured officials from the White House and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Panelists included Aaron Bishop, deputy commissioner, Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities at the Administration for Community Living; Anand Parekh, deputy assistant secretary for health at HHS; G. Stephane Philogene, associate director, Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research; Paolo del Vecchio, director, Center for Mental Health Services at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA); Brian Altman, legislative director, SAMHSA; and Marcia Brand, deputy administrator, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
“I was so pleased to attend the briefing and hear the discussions. The officials talked about the need for better coordination between health and human services professionals,” noted Messinger. “It let me know that the work we are doing in the School and the College of Health and Human Services—training our students for interprofessional, client-centered care—is right where we need to be.“
Messinger joined approximately 140 attendees from the social work education, social work, mental and behavioral health, and health care communities.