If You Care About Mental Health in NC, Learn These Letters
A, B, C, D...LME/MCO? As we finish up Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, it’s time to talk about the alphabet soup that is mental healthcare in North Carolina. Some people are lucky enough to be able to pay for their care out-of-pocket, or through their group insurance. But what if you don’t have those options? Where do you go? The letters to know are L-M-E-M-C-O: Local Management Entities/Managed Care Organizations. An LME/MCO is an organization that manages mental healthcare for North Carolinians who qualify for Medicaid. Unsurprisingly, they’re controversial.
The Surgeon General Says That Doctors Must Help Stop the Opioid Epidemic
Last month Vivek Murthy, U.S. Surgeon General, addressed the growing national opioid epidemic with an open letter to 2.3 million physicians and other healthcare professionals. He called upon them to take the lead in providing access to treatment for opioid addiction, implementing safe prescribing practices, and creating an environment of compassionate care without stigma or shame. Opioids are a class of drugs used to treat pain. Many opioids are prescription medications, but the class also includes street drugs like heroin. Unfortunately, these drugs can be addicting — and are, for millions of Americans. And Murthy says it’s time for doctors to do something about it. And as the head doctor in the country, he’d know.
Holly Hill Hospital Is Growing
It’s Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, and we’ve got some more mental health news for you. In August Holly Hill Hospital, a psychiatric care facility located in Raleigh, received the green light for a 32-bed expansion. The new addition will be a three-story building located near the hospital’s main campus.
Hallelujah! Revamped Psychiatric Hospital in Goldsboro Will Serve Hundreds of Patients
As we continue through National Suicide Prevention Awareness month, we’re becoming more and more aware of the acute need for better mental health services in NC. Goldsboro's revamped Cherry Hospital, now the newest psychiatric facility in the state, will help fill that need. It opened on August 30th after a three year delay, and just in time — emergency rooms across the state are overflowing with mental healthcare patients in need of beds, and new ones can’t come soon enough. At full capacity, Cherry Hospital will be able to house more than 300 of those patients.
North Carolina Must Do More for Our Veterans’ Mental Health
As part of our observance of Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, we’re talking about mental health and North Carolina’s veterans. We should start with some statistics: North Carolina is home to one of the largest active duty military populations in the US. When veterans, spouses, surviving spouses, and dependents are taken into account, over a third of North Carolinians have a connection to the military. Each branch of the military is represented in our state, and more than 100,000 of our children are military dependents. North Carolinians are tremendously proud of our veterans. But sometimes we’re unaware of their issues - particularly around mental health. And that means we can’t support them the way they deserve.
Beautiful Memories: the Nasher Uses Art to Reach Dementia Patients
As a part of our ongoing look at mental health in North Carolina, we’re reporting on something that may surprise you: art works, and not just to help occupy our kids’ active brains or to inspire and move us. Studying art may bring memory back to dementia patients.