The implementation of DWC was the result of a cooperative venture of the Detroit-Wayne County Community Mental Health Agency (D-WCCMHA) now Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority (DWMHA) and The Guidance Center (TGC) in response to the demand for System Transformation. The idea originated through the Annapolis Coalition report on the Behavioral Health Workforce in 2000. The following year, The Institute of Medicine published the first of a series of books dedicated to quality in health care, Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century.
The Institute of Medicine published a new volume each year, and in 2006, released a report for the mental health community. Improving the Quality of Health Care for Mental And Substance-Use Conditions was the catalyst that helped to bring Detroit Wayne Connect into existence. Chapter Seven of this book, "Increasing Workforce Capacity for Quality Improvement" shined a light on the inconsistent and uneven education and training of behavioral health employees. The formal education for medical doctors and nurses is based on the universal application of strict standards and guidelines. However, professionals providing behavioral health and counseling services to populations with a mental illness or substance use condition can potentially follow dramatically different educational tracks.
DWMHA partnered with The Guidance Center, Wayne State University and Wayne County Community College District to establish Detroit Wayne Connect (formerly known as VCE) in 2006. DWC was created to overcome these differences, to maintain a trained and qualified workforce, and ultimately improve care and services for our consumers and their families. Using proven Evidence Based Practices, we offer the most current trainings and curriculums in the field to advance the knowledge and skill of the workforce.
In 2008, DWMHA launched the training website website. This multimedia website provides 24/7 training opportunities for the community. One of the key objectives of this site is to provide convenient and easily accessible event listings, online registration, archive of video recorded lectures and distance learning opportunities. Members have the benefit of a virtual transcript which tracks registration and attendance for DWC-sponsored training and online required courses, as well as the ability to upload all training records.
DWMHA houses and manages this unique program. With workforce specialists and event coordinating specialists, plus the use of cutting edge technology, DWC has the capability of researching, creating, and implementing successful, organized educational opportunities.
Communication and collaboration between partners has been an important part of the process of developing DWC into the unique model it is today. Collaboration with multi-talented and skilled staff, partnered with current and new partners ensures the creation of a widespread learning community where we can share knowledge, decision making and experience.