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Emotional Wellness Survey will set mental health priorities

Chaffee County Public Health (CCPH) is launching a quarterly Emotional Wellness Survey. The survey will help inform the focus of CCPH and its new Behavioral Health Navigation workforce which was created in response to the 2021 Chaffee County Community Health Assessment. The document then prioritized mental health in the 2022-2026 Community Health Improvement Plan.

The overall goal of the newly created Behavioral Health Navigation workforce is to “work with the community and community partners to support an individual’s mental and emotional well-being while identifying opportunities for education, awareness, coordination, and collaboration across sectors on behalf of each person’s unique needs.”

Two Behavioral Health Navigators have been hired to assist members of the public with the challenges of getting connected to the appropriate services that someone needs and to bridge any gaps when they exist.

They will work closely with local mental health providers, including Solvista Health, to help ensure that the people who really need care are able to obtain it in as timely of a manner as possible.

Mental illnesses are conditions that affect Chaffee County residents’ thoughts, feelings, moods, or behaviors. They include anxiety, bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophrenia. A mental illness may be chronic—meaning it lasts a long time—and can deeply affect people’s day-to-day life.

The link to the Emotional Wellness Survey can be found on the Public Health Facebook page, county website page, and in paper form at the Buena Vista and Salida libraries. Flyers will also be distributed throughout the community with a link to the survey. The long link can be found here.

“After serving our county for five and a half years with CCPH, and before that as a pastor for 27  years, I’ve seen the  mental health challenges that people face elevate significantly in number and complexity.  And while we are fortunate in our rural county to have many mental health services and providers, not everyone knows what these are,” said Chaffee County Public Health Special Projects Coordinator Mike Orrill.  “Additionally, the systems and requirements to access these services are not always easy for everyone.  By developing a navigation workforce, we hope to remove as many barriers as possible to get people connected to [the] care they need”

For more information on the Behavioral Health Navigation workforce, visit or email Camille Howard at or Kirsten Love at ].