We are thrilled to welcome Stephanie Lynch to Good Neighbor as the Director of Government Affairs, Strategy, and Development.
Mental health in Virginia is changing and Stephanie Lynch has a thing or two to do with that.
Before coming to Good Neighbor, Stephanie was the Director of Medicaid Innovation at Virginia Association of Health Plans (VAHP). During her tenure there, she helped support the implementation of programs like Commonwealth Coordinated Care (CCC), and later CCC plus, as well as Addiction Recovery Treatment Services (ARTS), which was the nation’s first comprehensive substance use disorder benefit under Medicaid managed care.
Stephanie helped advance the Emergency Department Care Coordination Initiative, an IT solution that went live this summer and connects all hospital eHRs, emergency room, primary care, behavioral health providers and health plans with real-time data on Virginia’s Medicaid patients as they move across the care continuum.
She also led the Ralph Northam for Governor DisAbilities Policy Working Group and helped author the Governor’s Disability Policy platform during the Ralph Northam for Governor Campaign.
Stephanie is driven.
She will tell you that what gets her up in the morning (which is usually pretty early), are the big question marks that face our state government today about how to improve the current mental health system and make life better for all people.
As the state begins to figure out which levers to pull to reshape the system, Stephanie is there before the legislature advocating for those who need it most.
“One thing that has to change is that we can’t look at a person’s condition as stagnant,” Stephanie says. That kind of shift requires a system that centers around the needs of the patient instead of the needs of the providers. It requires us all to think differently and look at what’s in the best interest of the person.
“It’s scary. It’s talking about doing things differently. It’s a culture change of the way that we used to look at the behavioral health benefit and people with behavioral health diagnosis,” Stephanie adds.
Innovation on a large scale is indeed daunting. And Stephanie wants to encourage everyone to do their part to help create equal opportunity.
For Stephanie, the motivation behind her passion is her godson. She met her godson’s mother when she was homeless and four months pregnant. They have been a huge part of Stephanie’s life ever since.
“My godson is probably the most important thing in my life,” Stephanie says. “He really is what motivates me.”
We’re excited to have Stephanie on our team to help us continue to build better mental health alternatives for the people we serve.
Stephanie received her Masters of Social Work Administration and Policy Practice and a double major in Women’s Studies and Biopsychology, with an African American studies minor from Virginia Commonwealth University.