Staff Lay-offs in Co-Occuring Program

Lincoln County Health and Human Services (LCHHS) will lay-off staff in the Co-Occurring Disorders and Addictions (CODAA) Program in an effort to balance the budget. The layoffs will be effective Friday, June 1, 2018. The layoffs will include 8 Lincoln County Employees Association (LCEA) members, 1 vacant management position that will not be replaced, and 3 part-time non-union members. Lincoln County Behavioral Health will continue to offer co-occurring disorder and addiction services as well as counseling and case management to adults, adolescents, children and families with remaining staff.  Co-occurring disorders refers to an individual having one or more substance abuse disorders and one or more psychiatric disorders CODAA was formerly known as Dual Diagnosis.

The lay-offs are due to a reduction in estimated funding and service levels resulting in a significant budget deficit.  After hiring more staff for the program, staff did not see the expected number of clients or provide the level of client services planned for in this year's budget.  We have paid the full cost of running the program, but the revenue has been significantly underestimated.  The result also includes a reduction in funding from Intercommunity Health Network Coordinated Care Organization for these services to reflect the level of services actually provided.

“Our hearts go out to the affected staff,” said Rebecca Austen, Interim Health & Human Services Director. “These are challenging times for HHS and our staff is committed to continue serving the people of Lincoln County.”

“This is a disappointing setback,” said Commissioner Bill Hall, “but I want to assure the public that the county will continue to provide essential mental health services. As part of the Stepping Up Initiative, we are working to build stronger relationships with community providers, law enforcement and Samaritan Health Services so we have a Mental Health system with a broader base of services and resources.”

Individuals and families may inquire and access services by calling 265-4179. Mental health counselors screen all inquiry calls.   Services offered include group, family and/or individual counseling for problems addressing:

  • Self-esteem.
  • Appropriate expression of feelings, and healthy boundaries.
  • Coping skills.
  • Children with behaviors and/or emotional problems and parenting.
  • Medication evaluation and management.
  • Support and peer-building relation.
  • Panic and anxiety issues.

For more information contact:

Rebecca C. Austen, RN, MSN
Lincoln County Health & Human Services Interim Director
255 SW Coast Hwy., Suite 203A
Newport, OR  97365
(541) 265-0400