Today SAMHSA is announcing its new Chief Medical Officer, Anita Everett, M.D. As many of you know, SAMHSA has been working hard to increase its visibility and capacity as a clinical leader in the field of behavioral health. With Dr. Everett joining our Executive Leadership Team, not only do we gain a wealth of scientific and clinical expertise, we are adding a prominent leader who has earned respect and credibility in the field of psychiatry as an innovator, problem solver, and consensus builder.
Dr. Everett will be leading the newly created Office of the Chief Medical Officer (OCMO). This office will have five dedicated staff, including an additional medical doctor, and will greatly expand SAMHSA’s ability to provide high-quality, state-of-the-art, evidence-based approaches to advancing the nation’s behavioral health. Working with SAMHSA leadership and staff, the OCMO will provide valuable input into strategic initiatives, policy directions, and legislative issues to ensure that medically researched and clinically approved practices are incorporated in the development and implementation of SAMHSA programs and activities.
In addition, Dr. Everett and her team will lead SAMHSA's quality and medical systems improvement efforts. They will focus on measuring, improving, and reporting on the quality of behavioral health services as we move toward greater integration with the primary care, specialty medical, and public health systems.The Office will be an important facet of SAMHSA’s public facing efforts and will have an active role in communicating about SAMHSA’s portfolio and other pressing public health issues.
This past February, Dr. Everett was chosen to serve as the next president-elect for the American Psychiatric Association (APA) where she has previously held numerous leadership roles related to issues such as national policy, training and development, psychiatric research, and healthcare financing. She also has served as president of the Maryland Psychiatric Society and president of the American Association of Community Psychiatrists.
Dr. Everett is currently the Division Director of Johns Hopkins Community and General Psychiatry, Bayview Campus, and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD. Her current area of research is the health behavior of individuals with long-term mental illnesses.
With her rich experiences in domestic and international behavioral health, we feel fortunate to have Dr. Everett joining SAMHSA leadership on September 5. Announcements for the other clinical expert positions mentioned above are forthcoming. Thanks in advance to those of you who share the postings with your networks as we search for strong national expertise to round out our OCMO team.
Acting SAMHSA Administrator