Media Advisory: Petris Center Symposium to address impact of Prop 63

Contact: Jim Ross, Petris Center
(510) 643-4101

ATTENTION: Health and medical reporters and editors, assignment editors


The annual Nicholas C. Petris Center Symposium at the University of California, Berkeley, which this year will focus on a major new evaluation of the Full-Service Partnership program. The program was established under the Mental Health Services Act, or Proposition 63, that was passed by California voters in 2004.

The Full Service Partnership (FSP) program focuses on severely mentally ill individuals who are homeless or at risk of being homeless, frequent users of emergency services, or who have had interaction with the criminal justice system. The evaluation, conducted by The Nicholas C. Petris Center on Health Care Markets and Consumer Welfare in UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health, found a positive impact on homelessness, arrests, emergency room admissions, education and employment.

The symposium is open to the public.


Friday, April 9, 1-5 p.m


Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant Ave., Berkeley


Speakers will include researchers from the Petris Center and national, state and county mental health leaders. Among these are:

  • Dr Steve Mayberg, director of the California Department of Mental Health
  • Dr Michael Hogan, director of the New York State Department of Mental Health
  • Dr. Richard Scheffler, Petris Center director and UC Berkeley professor of public health


The Full-Service Partnership program, a key part of the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA), provides the most comprehensive level of services to unserved and underserved individuals of all ages with severe mental illness. These services include assistance in housing, employment, school, physical health, co-occurring substance abuse disorders and establishing social supports. From the passage of Prop. 63 in November 2004 to the end of fiscal year 2010-11, the California Department of Mental Health is expected to have spent more than $6 billion dollars on programs related to MHSA.

“The Mental Health Services Act was put in place to improve the lives and well-being of Californians accessing public mental health services,” said Dr. Stephen W. Mayberg, director of the state Department of Mental Health. “It is encouraging to see independent evidence that Full-Service Partnerships are more than achieving these goals while affording those most in need an opportunity to fully experience what life has to offer.”

“We designed key parts of this study to measure causal effects,” said Dr. Timothy Brown, associate director of research and training at the Petris Center. “The study utilized measures of quality of care, outcomes and satisfaction that are currently recommended standards by the federal agency, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.”

“Proposition 63 was focused on transforming the public mental health system in California, and it does just that,” said Petris Center Director Richard Scheffler.

The Petris Center has been studying effects of The Mental Health Services Act since 2005, supported by funding from the California Health Care Foundation and the California Department of Mental Health.