Heroes for Health: Julie Hueller

This spotlight series is designed to profile members of the Racine Collaborative for Children’s Mental Health. Over the coming months, the series will feature individual Collaborative members, each of whom is integral to the group’s efforts to forge stronger connections and establish new approaches to strengthen the social and emotional development of our children.

This series is an opportunity to highlight and recognize the diverse individuals, services and resources available to the Racine community.


Who: Julie Hueller, Vice President of Operations at Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare

Website: www.mywheaton.org

Email: Julie.Hueller@wfhc.org

Phone: 262-687-2564

Twitter: @wheatonfwi

About Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare: For more than a century, Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare and its dedicated staff have offered the highest level of quality care to individuals and families throughout Southeast Wisconsin. They combine new technologies and innovative treatments with a compassionate, healing environment. Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare organizations provide nearly one-quarter of health care delivered in the region. It is the state’s second largest private employer with nearly 10,000 associates in Southeast Wisconsin and affiliations with more than 1,300 physicians throughout the area.

Words from Julie, a Hero for Health:

It pains me to see children with mental health issues go unaddressed. It tells me that we as a community have missed necessary steps somewhere. The Collaborative for Children’s Mental Health is really about having the strength to say that we want things to be different. I stepped up and joined the Collaborative to support the fact that we must face these issue head on. Our children are too precious to allow another generation to come and go without doing everything we can to ensure that they may take on productive and fulfilling roles in our community.

Due to the complexity of mental health issues, most people don’t fully understand how these issues can impact one’s day-to-day experience. As a community, I believe we have increased our support for families and have started to help people understand that we do have high-quality services that produce results. We have been able to break down barriers by communicating with each other and acknowledging that it’s okay to have a mental health need. Because of this, we are able to leverage our community in a different way – when 15 years ago, people just didn’t talk to one another about mental health challenges.

When I started my nursing career in 1986, we did not have a good mechanism in place for identifying mental health issues early in a child’s life. Today, we do have people in our community who can identify the issue and provide support, but it is still not a widely known resource. The question is: How do we have this conversation now that we have a new generation? How do we identify mental health issues earlier and let people know there’s help available? If we don’t look at changing the conversation around mental health, we will have another generation that suffers in silence because they lacked awareness of the resources available to them.

 

The first meeting of the Racine Collaborative for Children’s Mental Health was the first time the community came together to have a serious conversation about the mental health needs of our youth. We now acknowledge there is a risk in everyone continuing to work in silos, and we are committing to a coordinated approach in the future. This will ensure that we are not providing repetitive treatment and will enable us to partner services and, in so doing, provide stronger care for our children. We also need to address access to care and create a system and structure that makes it easy for individuals and families to pass through one door and receive the full range of treatment that they may need.

I would like to see our community succeed in providing care to every child in need. Early access and assistance can make an enormous difference in supporting and helping an individual fulfill his or her potential as a productive student, engaged family member and active citizen.

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