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New leadership at Connections as the state's behavioral health contractor looks to expand

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Delaware Public Media
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The Delaware-based nonprofit Connections has announced new leadership as the organization looks to expand its footprint in the First State.   

Connections is Delaware’s largest behavioral health provider and is contracted by multiple state agencies. 

Its founder, President and CEO of more than 30 years Catherine McKay announced her retirement in October. 

Connections COO William Northey will serve as interim CEO and Connections has added two new members to its board.

Northey says Connections currently has five Requests for Proposal with state agencies to continue and expand the work it does in Delaware. He adds the Connections board thought he should fill the role while the RFPs are resolved. 

“Depending on the outcomes of those RFP’s Connections as it currently exists could look basically the same or substantially different,” said Northey.        

Connections is looking to renew its contract with Delaware’s Department of Correction (DOC) to provide medical and behavioral health services in state prisons. That contract is up in June and Northey says Connections is competing with several for-profit out-of-state groups in the bid process.

“We think we put a good proposal in, other than that we don’t have any feedback from anybody as of yet,” he said.    

Connections is also bidding for new contracts with the Delaware Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) and the Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA) to provide more clinical services like Medication Assisted Treatment, add more job placement programs and add more housing in Delaware for people with mental health issues. 

It also recently opened a new outpatient clinic in Claymont.

Northey says Connections currently doses about 3500 people a day in Delaware with medication meant to assist treatment for substance abuse.

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