Significant Progress Made in SC Behavioral Health Services and Supports

The South Carolina Institute of Medicine & Public Health (IMPH) released the first annual Progress Report presenting a status update on each recommendation from May 2015’s Behavioral Health Taskforce report, “Hope for Tomorrow: The Collective Approach for Transforming South Carolina’s Behavioral Health Systems.”

Following the release of the report, IMPH formed an Implementation Leadership Council of key leaders to provide the vision for how the recommendations would be achieved, to foster collaborations and to propel forward movement in improving our state’s behavioral health systems.

We are pleased to share that significant progress has been achieved in a number of areas across South Carolina’s system of behavioral health services and supports.

Most notably:

  • A Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU) will be opening in Charleston in early 2017, and the communities of Anderson, Florence, Greenville and Spartanburg are planning a similar facility.
  • The South Carolina Department of Mental Health (DMH) will use a new $1 million legislative allocation to support the development of CSUs.
  • Community Crisis Response and Intervention services will be offered statewide. A partnership between the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (SC DHHS) and DMH will now offer services in all 46 counties.
  • In March of this year, the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDC) opened a CSU for inmates in serious psychological distress.
  • SCDC inmates now have continuity of care with Medicaid benefits as they transition from institutional care back to their communities.
  • The South Carolina Department of Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Services will use a new $1.75 million state budget allocation to support local providers in increasing capacity and to improve access to Medically-Assisted Treatment programs, an evidence-based tool for detoxification from opioids.

Please join us as we celebrate these successes and support continued enhancements to existing gaps in our state’s mental health and substance use disorder service systems. It remains a critical area of health improvement for South Carolina, and we must continue to maximize the collective impact through new and enhanced collaborations and innovative approaches to care.

For more information, please contact Maya Pack.

Selected Media Coverage

Report: SC has high prevalence of mental illness (The Spartanburg Herald-Journal, October 21, 2016)

SC Report Highlights Mental Health Fixes (The Spartanburg Herald-Journal, November 1, 2016)

Behavioral health task force says it’s making progress in S.C. (The Post and Courier, November 21, 2016)

Report: SC mental health system making progress, but much more to do (The Greenville News, November 22, 2016)