This session describes two successful state models that support engagement and referral to treatment for individuals with substance use disorders who present in the ER or in primary care settings. Kimberly Walsh, Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Behavioral Health and Health Facilities for the State of West Virginia, outlines the critical success factors of the West Virginia 24/7 substance use disorder referral hotline called HELP4WV including how the call line has impacted access and navigation of WV’s service delivery system by those reaching out for assistance. Ken Martz, PsyD, MBA, Special Assistant to the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, describes the importance of warm handoff coordination and how transitions from physical health to substance use disorder treatment referrals in Pennsylvania have improved as a result of the PA Warm Handoff Model.

Data and anecdotes about both the West Virginia Hotline and PA Warm Handoff Model are shared for consideration by other states planning to launch a similar initiatives with the goal of improving outcomes.


Kimberly Walsh, MSW, MPA is a Deputy Commissioner with the West Virginia Department of Health & Human Resources – Bureau for Behavioral Health & Health Facilities. She holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work and a Master’s in Public Administration from West Virginia University and Certification in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia. Ms. Walsh has 31 years of experience working in the mental health and substance abuse fields with children, families, and adults in both nonprofit and public agencies. Ms. Walsh is committed to building community capacity and has spear-headed a number of collaborative projects over the years forging partnerships with community based providers, housing agencies, the education system, local units of government, public safety, funders, federal partners and countless other entities to think beyond the boundaries to comprehensively serve those in need.

Kenneth J. Martz, Psy.D. CAS. is a licensed psychologist and the Special Assistant to the Secretary for the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He has worked in treatment and management of special populations including criminal justice clients in community corrections and in prison settings for the past 20 years. Dr. Martz has a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Loyola College, a Master’s of Business Administration from Argosy University, and a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the American School of Professional Psychology. He holds each of the 3 national certifications in gambling treatment. He has a number of publications and international presentations in the addictions treatment field.

Additional Resources

Kimberly Walsh’s Slides – HELP4WV
Kenneth Martz’s Slides – Warm Handoff