Mental Health Advocacy Resources


Health Care For All, 30 Winter Street, 10th floor, Boston, MA, 02108
Phone: 617-350-7279, FAX: 617-451-5838, TTY: 617-350-0974


HCFA provides the Health Care Helpline - 1.800.272.4232 - a free resource about Massachusetts health care that is available to all.


The Mental Health Legal Advisors Committee works in a multitude of areas to enhance and protect the rights of persons with mental illness in Massachusetts.

An independent state agency of the Supreme Judicial Court, MHLAC provides advice and direct legal representation on a wide range of legal issues. These include: access to services, treatment rights, equitable treatment in custody and visitation matters, guardianship abuse, insurance discrimination, educational rights, housing bias, and mistreatment in institutional and community settings. In addition to providing direct legal representation and advice, MHLAC lawyers also train judges, attorneys, and advocates; interpret and analyze legislation; and produce brochures and longer publications on pertinent legal matters.



The Office of Patient Protection is within the Department of Public Health. Effective January 1, 2001, Massachusetts consumers and other individuals who receive health coverage from a Massachusetts carrier, insurer or HMO are entitled to protections covering internal grievances, medical necessity guidelines, continuity of care and independent external reviews.

Consumers with questions concerning rights as a managed care consumer, can  contact the Department of Public Health Office of Patient Protection (OPP) at 1-800-436-7757. The managed care ombudsman can provide to assistance. You may also contact OPP at

If you have a complaint about a managed care plan, you can contact the Bureau of Managed Care within the Division of Insurance at 617-521-7372.


Parent’s How-to Guide for Children’s Mental Health Services,” outlines the best way for parents to navigate the mental health system for their child and provides many resources.  Topics include: Problems Your Child May Have, First Steps for Getting Help, Paying for Services, Navigating Mental Health Networks, Services in Your Child’s Schools, Other State Programs, and, Aging Out of Child Services.

Read or download the guide.

You can also contact 617-778-1934 or email to order a copy of the guide.


Boston Bar Association releases updated “How-To Guide to Children’s Mental Health Services in Boston.”  The Guide is designed to help parents in Massachusetts find the child mental health resources and services their children need.  This newest edition expands the Guide to address developmental and autism spectrum disorders, broadens the discussion of school-based and special education programs, and adds many new references to the Resource List at the end of the Guide. This edition also updates the Guide to incorporate recent developments which include new coordination of care initiatives, such as Unified Planning Teams, that bridge programs and Departments within the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS), and the Children's Behavioral Health Initiative, which establishes a new coordinated system of community-based mental health services.  Download the guide.


Resources on Bullying  Behavioral health professionals are key players in preventing and addressing bullying. The MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education offers information compiled from various federal, state and private resources on its website. Website.