Sarah A. Wattenberg Joins NAPHS as Director of Quality and Addiction Services

Tuesday, January 9, 2018 General News
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Effective Jan. 8, Sarah

A. Wattenberg, M.S.W. has joined the National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems (NAPHS) as director of quality and addiction services. In this new role, she will oversee the association's interests, positions, and actions related to behavioral
healthcare quality and addiction services.

Since February 2015, Ms. Wattenberg worked as senior policy advisor at the White House Office of National Drug Policy. In that role, she served on the president's parity task force, where she provided scientific, technical, and policy consultation on improving implementation of substance use and mental health insurance parity, including guidance on medication assisted treatment. She has spent nearly two decades working in the federal government, advising high-level executive branch officials about emerging issues, challenges, and policy opportunities related to opioids and other drugs, evidence-based practices, service delivery arrangements, public and commercial financing and parity, privacy, and treatment quality.  

Ms. Wattenberg also brings considerable clinical experience to her new role. She spent 11 years working in community-based programs for the seriously mentally ill in Montgomery County, Md. As a program director and clinical supervisor, she ran one of the country's first community alternatives to inpatient hospitalization. She also opened a mental health clinic, served as a liaison to law enforcement, homeless shelters and county and state agencies, and supported developing Maryland's "crisis" regulations. Directly before entering government services, Ms. Wattenberg was the senior director for clinical policy development at one of the nation's largest managed behavioral healthcare companies.

"We are excited to welcome Sarah, who has deep knowledge and hands-on experience in the fields of healthcare quality and services for individuals with substance use disorders," said NAPHS President and CEO Mark Covall.  "Sarah is regarded highly among her professional peers in both the public and private sectors. This will serve her well as she helps NAPHS identify and develop policy positions on substance use disorder treatment that will ultimately improve access and care for those who need it most."

Ms. Wattenberg has a master's degree in social work from Catholic University of America and earned her bachelor's degree at New York University.   

About NAPHS The National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems (NAPHS) advocates for behavioral health and represents provider systems that are committed to the delivery of responsive, accountable, and clinically effective prevention, treatment, and care for children, adolescents, adults, and older adults with mental and substance use disorders. Its members are behavioral healthcare provider organizations that own or manage more than 1,000 specialty psychiatric hospitals, general hospital psychiatric and addiction treatment units and behavioral healthcare divisions, residential treatment facilities, youth services organizations, and extensive outpatient networks. The association was founded in 1933.


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SOURCE National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems (NAPHS)


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