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Indianapolis-Based Adult & Child Health Joins Brightli Behavioral Health System

Under new partnership, A&C will invest in infrastructure and staff, and expand legacy of quality services in the Indianapolis area.

The Boards of Directors for Indianapolis-based Adult & Child Health and Springfield, Missouri-based Brightli, Inc. have signed documents to create a formal partnership between the two nonprofit organizations as of March 1, 2024.

Under the agreement, Adult & Child Health (A&C), a state-designated Community Mental Health Center (CMHC), joins nearly a half dozen other behavioral and community health providers as member organizations of Brightli, the nation’s fourth-largest nonprofit behavioral health organization by total revenue.

The partnership will significantly increase financial and system support resources available to Adult & Child, for the benefit of those with behavioral health needs in central Indiana.

“To expand services in our communities, we need altogether new and different approaches,” said A&C President and CEO Allen Brown. “With Brightli we’ve found a tremendous partner who is willing to dream big, and I know they feel the same way about Adult & Child.” Brown is set to retire in the spring of 2024.

Indiana is one of 10 states selected to participate in the second round of the federal Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) demonstration project, beginning next year. Missouri was part of the first cohort of demonstration states in 2017; CCBHC has since become state law. In coming months, the Indiana Department of Mental Health and Addiction is expected to announce which Community Mental Health Centers will be part of the state’s first round of CCBHC demonstration agencies.

“The CCBHC approach for community mental health is exactly what’s needed, and the time is now. Effective implementation and optimization of the CCBHC model truly changes the trajectory of what is possible in the behavioral health space,” Brown added.

Brightli’ s existing member organizations include multiple CMHC/CCBHCs, including the second largest CCBHC in the country, Burrell Behavioral Health. In the first five years under CCBHC in Missouri, Burrell’s total revenue grew by 125%, clients served grew by 163%, and it added 1,000 employees to its statewide workforce.

Dr. C.J. Davis is CEO of Brightli. Davis previously served as CEO of an Indiana CMHC from 2012 to 2017.

“I have never stopped caring about Indiana or following the progress of the behavioral health industry here,” Davis said. “To be able to return, and to do so through a company with the legacy and respect that A&C carries in this community, is a dream come true. Brightli shares the commitment to mission this team lives out every day, and I am truly excited to see what we can do together.”

“The fact that Indiana is such a forward-thinking state, with strong leadership at the very top, will only aid our efforts to recruit top-of-field providers to the Hoosier State,” Davis added.

A&C will retain its board of directors and continue to operate under the Adult & Child Health name, serving its existing area of downtown Indianapolis, greater Marion and Johnson counties, and the surrounding region. As a Brightli affiliate, A&C is positioned within a family of systems, able to receive significant resources and support from the parent organization.

Adult & Child Health joins Burrell Behavioral Health, Preferred Family Healthcare, Southeast Missouri Behavioral Health, and other subsidiaries under the Brightli umbrella. Burrell and Preferred Family each have various subsidiaries and affiliates, providing a full behavioral health (CMHC) and community health (FQHC) continuum, including dental services, as well as significant developmental services operations. Brightli currently serves more than 100,000 individuals in four states. With the addition of A&C, Brightli would employ some 5,500 individuals with total revenue of more than $500 million with operations in five states.

“The landscape for mental health care is changing. A&C could not be more excited to be at the forefront of that change with Brightli as our long-term partners in Indiana,” Brown said.