Pictured Above: Portia Bell Hume, MD; Meji Singh, PhD; Joty Sikand, PsyD
Who Was Portia Bell Hume?
Portia Bell Hume, M.D was a pioneer in developing community mental health and was instrumental in the writing and passage of California's Short-Doyle Act in 1957. She had the foresight to provide professional training by creating the Center for Training in Community Psychiatry. R.K. Janmeja "Meji" Singh, PhD, Founding President of The Hume Center, worked with her as the Assistant Director for 14 years. Her legacy of dedication to the betterment of the community lives on today, as the Portia Bell Hume Behavioral Health and Training Center was named after her to continue her vision to provide comprehensive mental health services and best practices in professional training and research.
The History of The Hume Center
The Hume Center was initially incorporated as Neurobehavioral and Psychological Institute (NPI) in 1993, providing outpatient services in a room rented from Rosebridge Graduate School. Soon after the founding, the name was changed to Portia Bell Hume Behavioral Health and Training Center as the services offered expanded into a continuum of care.
Mental Health Consultation has always been a specialty of The Hume Center by Dr. Singh. He is recognized internationally as a trainer in community mental health and organizational consultation. The agency's consultation practices are grounded in the work of Gerald Caplan, who developed the theory and practice of Mental Health Consultation, and have been modified based on experiences and successful practice by Dr. Singh and current President Joty Sikand, PsyD.
Dr. Sikand has utilized enabling leadership to facilitate the expansion of the agency to twelve programs. Each program has been developed by trainees and this expansion has resulted in the agency now training over 40 doctoral trainees and serving over 2,000 people directly each year.
Level II Pilot Program IICOP Sunsetted after Five Years: Please read this story for the history of a temporary pilot program that served Alameda County from 2011 to 2016. Over seventy-five percent of consumers served did not use psychiatric emergency services during their time in the program and almost ninety did not utilize psychiatric emergency services after they finished in the program.