1) Support, safeguard & expand peer specialists, peer workers, and peer-run programs.
2) Promote information, education and training on innovative recovery practices.
3) Advocate for funding for peer workers and innovative recovery oriented services.
Transcom is a subcommittee of the MA State Mental Health Planning Committee. The group was established in November 2004 to support the Massachusetts’ Center for Medicaid Services Mental Health Systems Transformation Grant. The grant was completed in 2007, but Transcom members continue to meet monthly to focus on priority goals through lively discussion and short-term work groups. Transcom is committed to person-driven practices and policies that bring the voice of people with mental health, trauma and addiction recovery needs to bear on statewide policy issues.
Brief overview of documents and activities to support the integrity, implementation and funding of peer workers in Massachusetts, features the work of Transcom.
The emergence of peer roles in healthcare has been accompanied by confusion as these roles increase without enough guidance from experts in the field of peer support. Based on 10 years of broad collaboration and focused inquiry, Transcom offers that guidance to recovery health providers and integrated healthcare systems. This document includes five elements:
1) A summary of what sets peer support roles apart from other mental health and addiction support roles,
2) Essential practices regarding the effective use of peer professionals and
3) A chart showing the various stages of peer professional development.
Following the chart is:
4) A list of acronyms, trainings, web links and references and
5) The Massachusetts Certified Peer Specialist Code of Ethics.
Transcom’s Position Statement on Employee Self-Disclosure in Health and Social Service Workplaces (originally published 2007, link below)
(originally published 2006, link below)
Provides new context and recommendations to for those who want to successfully integrate mental health peer specialists into the workforce. Transcom calls for a unified, system-wide, focused and sustained effort to strengthen and protect the integrity of the peer worker role and the success of Certified Peer Specialists (CPSs).
Extensive appendices include: MA Certified Peer Specialist (CPS) Code of Ethics, Brief Literature Review, Massachusetts-Based Studies of Peer Specialists, References, History of Funding for Peer Support in Massachusetts (chart).
A Massachusetts Roadmap for Successfully Integrating Peer Specialists and Peer Support Workers into the Public Mental Health System
Transcom’s policy recommendations on hiring and valuing peers in the mental health workforce. The executive summary begins with Transcom’s letter and personal testimony to the Department of Mental Health Commissioner Barbara Leadholm introducing the report.
Transcom’s Position Statement on Employee Self-Disclosure in Mental Health Service Workplaces (Revised 2013, link above)
(Revised 2012, link above)
Transcom’s first position paper clarifies the important role peer specialists have as change agents. Outlines 2006 peer support activities in Massachusetts, the evidence base for peer specialists, challenges and solutions for the successful integration of certified peer specialists and next steps for expanding peer specialists throughout the state.