Behavioral Health News


Contact: Julie Banda – Vice President, Communications & Development 
Office: 617.441.1736
Mobile: 617.945.6251 

Date: July 8, 2022 

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Vinfen, a leading provider of community-based services for adults and youth with mental health conditions, intellectual and developmental disabilities, brain injuries, and behavioral health challenges in Massachusetts and Connecticut, has been awarded the Northeast region Lowell CBHC contract by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS).  

Vinfen’s Lowell Community Behavioral Health Center (CBHC) is an enhanced model of care, developed by the state, that provides an integrated continuum of community-based behavioral health services for MassHealth members of all ages. The new Lowell CBHC will provide services to people in the Greater Lowell region including Billerica, Chelmsford, Dracut, Dunstable, Lowell, Tewksbury, Tyngsboro, and Westford with the goal of providing timely access to behavioral health and addiction services, improving the quality of care, and diverting people from unnecessary emergency department visits and hospitalizations.  

Vinfen Chief Operating Officer and Interim Chief Executive Officer Sophie Santaella added, “We are delighted to have been selected with our partners to provide these important services for the Lowell Region and look forward to working closely with the community to provide timely and accessible behavioral healthcare for adults and children.” 

Based in the City of Lowell, the CBHC will provide a community location for routine and urgent behavioral health outpatient services, mobile crisis services for adults and youth, and community crisis stabilization beds for adults and youth.  

To provide the most comprehensive CBHC services to the region, Vinfen has partnered with two longstanding and highly respected behavioral health providers, Advocates Inc., (Advocates) and Wayside Youth and Family Support Network Inc., (Wayside) to develop these services. CBHC services will begin January 2023.  

Advocates President and Chief Executive Officer Diane Gould added, “As our nation and region continue to grapple with a behavioral health crisis, the new Community Behavioral Health Center will be a vital resource by providing readily available, high-quality care. Our experienced and caring team is looking forward to partnering with Vinfen and Wayside to help Lowell-area individuals and families get improved access to the care they need, including in crisis situations.” 

Wayside President and Chief Executive Officer Eric L. Masi, Ed.D. added, “Building on Wayside’s 10-year history of providing child and family behavioral health services in Lowell, we are very proud to be partnering with Vinfen and Advocates to create the new Community Behavioral Health Center for the Greater Lowell region.” 

Through the formation of the Lowell CBHC, and with a long-standing history of providing equitable and person-centered behavioral health services for adults and youth in the Greater Lowell region, Vinfen and its partners are ready to hit the ground running and look forward to the opportunity to deepen and expand service delivery. We are committed to goal-oriented, trauma-informed, and evidence-based treatments that are culturally and linguistically appropriate, fostering health equity and reducing health disparities across the service area.   

More information can be found here: 
Baker-Polito Administration Selects Statewide Network of Community Behavioral Health Centers – Press Release 
Community Behavioral Health Centers 

About Vinfen 
Established in 1977, Vinfen is one of the most dynamic and innovative health and human services organizations in the country. With over 455 locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut, Vinfen is a premier provider of services for adolescents and adults with mental health conditions, intellectual and developmental disabilities, brain injuries, and behavioral health challenges. We provide a wide range of evidence-based programs in recovery, supported living, habilitation, education, employment, clinical, and peer support. For more information, please visit, 

About Advocates 
For more than 45 years, Advocates has offered services and supports that empower people with a broad range of needs to lead full and satisfying lives. Advocates partners with individuals, families, and communities to shape creative solutions to life’s challenges. At the heart of Advocates’ approach is a set of core values that guides their work in partnership with the people they support. 

About Wayside 
Launched in 1977, Wayside seeks to empower children, young adults, and families to achieve greater independence and emotional well-being. Using a full range of community education, prevention programming, support, and intervention strategies, Wayside’s work honors the power of individuals and families in their own recovery, focusing on affirmative and inspirational strategies to promote sustainable change that leads to independent living. Wayside’s success is rooted in authentic partnership with the youth, young adults, parents/caregivers, families, and communities they serve. 

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