Hamilton Center Receives LCC Grant for Addictions Treatment

Matrix Scholarships, Materials, and Equipment

Hamilton Center, Inc. has been awarded a grant from the Owen County Local Coordinating Council (LCC) and the Owen County Drug Free You & Me initiative that will fund addictions treatment scholarships for 12-15 individuals, as well as training for 2 staff members in Relapse Prevention. Through certification of The Matrix Model, Hamilton Center provides an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) which runs three times a week. The programming uses technology to deliver and enhance treatment through presentations, programming videos, and Motivational Interviewing. In 2018, Hamilton Center was designated as the first certified site for The Matrix Model in the state of Indiana, achieving a three-year Certification with Excellence.

The Matrix scholarships will remove the financial barrier to addictions treatments. Hamilton Center has state-certified navigators who can help those who are in need of services complete a health insurance application to obtain insurance that would potentially cover all their health care needs. “This process can take weeks, if not months, to complete and often presents an overwhelming financial barrier in seeking treatment,” said Cindy Rotman, Program Manager, Hamilton Center, Inc., Owen County. “Support from the Owen County LCC Drug Free Community Fund will help offset costs of Matrix programming, allowing consumers to receive the treatment they need in a timely manner, which can be crucial in the process of recovery from addiction,” added Mrs. Rotman.

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN. Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

For information on Hamilton Center Services call (800) 742-0787.

How to Get the Most Out of Telehealth

Hamilton Center offers tips for success

Telehealth has proven to be a convenient means for patients to interact with health care professionals; this is true for both our physical and mental health concerns.

Even so, telehealth can be uniquely delicate.

The best of sessions can feel “normal” and just like any other routine visit. Other sessions might end up feeling “tricky” or “clumsy”. The important thing to realize is that you are not alone in that experience and there are ways to improve it.

Here are some “tips and tricks” to improve your telehealth session and maximize your connection with your provider:

Do a mic check and a camera check before things start. Make sure that your provider can hear and see you clearly. No matter the device you are using always try to keep it stationary; use a table or a shelf and refrain from holding it in your hand; shoulder height is optimal. If internet connection is an issue move closer to your Wi-Fi source, or turn off other devices using Wi-Fi. Don’t start until you are sure your provider can hear and see you.

Create a quiet environment and minimize the potential for distraction. Perhaps go into a room and shut the door or let those around you know that you will be unavailable for a short time. Distractions can easily disrupt the process and progress of a telehealth session. Both you and your provider are there to discuss your physical and mental health needs, so give them your undivided attention.

Have your prescriptions, insurance information, and health history on-hand to review with the provider, as needed. The provider will need this information to properly complete the assessment. If you do not have specific information take notes and follow up after the session.

Be forward and up-front with your provider about your current physical and mental well-being. Thoroughly inform them of the specific issues you are having, including how those issues might be affecting other aspects of your health. Physical and mental health are closely connected; if you are in need of more specialized care your provider can refer you.

Make sure you and your provider are on the same page by checking-in mid-session. Ask questions. If something is unclear, or you have other concerns or comments, don’t be afraid to have your provider go back over them or elaborate further. Even repeating your provider’s instructions or comments as you understand them can go a long way in establishing clear communication. Try not to let the stress of technology or social distancing keep you from addressing your healthcare needs.

Telehealth is a powerful tool that everyone can use to ensure healthful outcomes in interactions with their providers.

Hamilton Center is open and currently serving the community with the highest quality mental and behavioral health services, as well as primary and integrated care services. If you or someone you know is struggling, please call 1-800-742-0787.

Telehealth Utilization is Up, Likely Here to Stay

Hamilton Center sees positive trends

Earlier this year the Health and Human Services (HHS) reported that telehealth interactions had increased from nine percent, prior to the pandemic, to 51 percent, during quarantine. Similarly, the CDC recently reported a 50 percent increase in telehealth services during the first quarter of 2020, compared to the same period of 2019. The vast majority of those cases were unrelated to COVID-19; however, there was a whopping 154 percent increase in telehealth sessions in the last week of March of 2020, marking the start of the rise of COVID-19 cases in the US and social distancing guidelines.

Telehealth services had been utilized for years by Hamilton Center, mainly as a way to connect with hospitals to provide psychiatric consultation.  This was particularly important in rural areas where providers were at a minimum.  Recently, telehealth services have grown to be the primary way people are receiving treatment. “Telehealth has been an excellent tool in addressing the needs of rural communities with limited access to healthcare, including for both primary health and behavioral health,” said Mark Collins, Chief Clinical Officer at Hamilton Center, Inc. “During COVID-19 the structures and systems we created to meet those demands have really assisted us in transitioning towards telehealth.”

Much of the rapid increases in telehealth services can be explained by the demands of the pandemic and the need to social distance; however, certain federal privacy regulations have become more flexible and broadened access to telehealth services to include video conferencing and telephonic conferencing, all with the goal of meeting COVID-19 demands. In person services are still available for emergency situations and when a face to face appointment is needed.

HHS also reported that while telehealth is expected to fall post-COVID-19, it’s also expected to level out at a much higher proportion of all delivery methods; around 21 percent of all delivered services. In addition, a recent national poll conducted by Morning Consult estimates that around 23 percent of all adults utilized telehealth during COVID-19.

“Towards the beginning, telehealth was relatively new to our patients and even some providers,” said Collins. “Now though, telehealth, for both primary and behavioral healthcare, is pulling its own weight in service delivery. In many ways we have seen patients become more accustomed to telehealth and even be drawn to it for convenience.”

In FY21 the organization delivered 23 percent of all services via telehealth, which included the first several months of the pandemic and quarantine. Today, many months into the pandemic, Hamilton Center delivers the majority of outpatient services via telehealth and continues to serve patients through in-person services when clinically appropriate, throughout its traditional 10-county service area.

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana headquartered in Terre Haute, IN. Services include specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people with drug and alcohol problems. Counseling services are provided for people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

To access services call 1-800-742-0787 or visit hamiltoncenter.org.

Want to learn more about how to get the most out of your telehealth session? Click here.

Hamilton Center Receives FQHC Look-alike Designation

Establishes one-stop-shop for all health care needs

Hamilton Center, Inc. has been designated as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Look-Alike through the Health Center Program of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The FQHC Look-Alike status allows organizations opportunities to develop and implement services required to meet the full qualifications for designation as a Federally Qualified Health Center. Together FQHCs and FQHC Look-alikes work to ensure health care for the Nation’s underserved communities and vulnerable populations through service provision to all, regardless of ability to pay.

“It is critical that we work to maximize access to care for medically underserved populations,” said Melvin L Burks, CEO of Hamilton Center, Inc. “This designation will provide us access to tools to do that with less barriers.”

Seeking this designation is a part of Hamilton Center’s strategic plan to address barriers to health care and to provide primary and behavioral health care integration.  In an effort to provide primary care services the organization opened Grace Clinic Health Professional in 2019 in two locations in west central Indiana. One serves Vigo County at 622 Eighth Avenue in Terre Haute, IN, and the other serves Putnam County at 239 Hillsdale Ave, Suite A in Greencastle, IN. The program is now serving adults, children, and families with primary health and behavioral healthcare in a single location.

Health Center’s across the country – totaling 12,000 unique service locations – deliver care to the Nation’s most vulnerable populations. According to HRSA, 1 in 12 individuals nation-wide – more than 28 million people – rely on HRSA-funded health centers for affordable, accessible primary health care. That’s one in nine children, one in five rural residents, and more than 385,000 veterans from across the country.

“Hamilton Center’s mission always included serving populations of our community that lack access to health care of any kind, whether that be due to financial barriers, transportation barriers, or social barriers,” said Dr. DJ Rhodes, Hamilton Center’s Chief of Health Clinic Services.  “This designation is a turning point in our ability to provide safety net services.” FQHC Look-alikes are eligible for Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), discounted drugs through the 340B Federal Drug Pricing Program, receive automatic Health Professional Shortage Area designation, and may access National Health Service Corps providers.

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN.  Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

For questions or inquiries about services call (812)-231-8323 or visit www.hamiltoncenter.org.

Hamilton Center, Inc. Designated as Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic

Receives $3.75M to enhance services

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has announced that Hamilton Center, Inc. (HCI) has received a two-year, $3.75M grant, through the CCBHC Expansion Grant, to expand and enhance services in Vigo County. Hamilton Center is currently working towards designation as a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC).

“This grant will assist us in addressing specific components of our larger strategic plan to improve access to evidence-based and integrated healthcare for individuals who live and seek services in Vigo County, Indiana.” said Melvin L Burks, CEO of Hamilton Center, Inc. “Vigo County is the organization’s largest service county with over 5,000 children and adults served each year.”

The populations of focus for this project will include adults and children with severe mental illness, substance use disorder, and co-occurring disorders, as well as individuals with chronic physical health needs.

“Our goals are to expand and enhance existing Hamilton Center services to provide a more comprehensive and integrated service delivery model for our consumers,” said Mark Collins, Chief Clinical Officer, Hamilton Center, Inc. “This includes improving access to crisis services, increasing coordination of intensive community treatment, and increasing access and coordination of psychiatric services,” he added.

Components of the program include establishing a 24-hr mobile crisis team and the implementation of the Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) model, an intensive team approach to community mental health service delivery that assists people in becoming independent and integrating into the community and provides access to services 24 hours a day. In addition, the grant will enhance Hamilton Center ‘s efforts to integrate primary and behavioral healthcare by providing additional screening for both. 

The CCBHC designation was established by the Excellence in Mental Health Act of 2014. This powerful legislation is the largest investment in mental health and addiction care in generations according to the National Council for Behavioral Health.

The CCBHC Expansion Grant expanded the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) program to include an additional 19 states. The goal of this expansion is to expand capacity in the behavioral health system to care for more Americans and alleviate the pressure on our nation’s jails and emergency rooms. The CCBHC Expansion Grant include $200 million in annually appropriated funding and $250 million in emergency COVID-19 funding.

“As a community organization committed to serving the behavioral health needs of our consumers, we are excited to incorporate these enhancements to our service delivery array,” said Melvin L Burks. “These opportunities assist us in our vision to advance excellence in behavioral health services.”

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN.  Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

For questions or inquiries about services call (812)-231-8323 or visit www.hamiltoncenter.org.

Hamilton Center, Inc. Takes Stake in the Lives of At-risk Youth

Brings new Achievement Mentoring Program to Vigo County Juvenile Detention Center

Hamilton Center has been awarded $18,860 by the United Way of the Wabash Valley to create an evidence-based mentoring program at the Vigo County Juvenile Detention Center. The program will target youth grades 4-11 utilizing Achievement Mentoring. The program will focus on a number of areas including decreasing student dropout, improving grades, increasing school attendance, decreasing discipline referrals, decreasing juvenile arrests, reducing drug and alcohol use, and increasing employment. The program is implemented in the school, in the community, and at the detention center and designed to link and coordinate resources for these youth while in treatment preparing them for release and reentry in the community.

“This program is proven to reduce problem behaviors, improve academics, and reduce drug and alcohol,” said, Brock Lough, Executive Director of School Service at Hamilton Center. “If we wish to address some of the county’s significant health and substance abuse concerns, we must focus not only on treatment but also prevention.”

Students meet with mentors weekly who receive weekly “report cards” that offer feedback from teachers on such items as attendance, classroom behavior, & academic achievements. In addition, mentors participate in weekly interviews with students’ teachers, complete a 1-hour consultation/coaching session each month with a Center for Supportive Schools (CSS) consultant and maintain contact with each student’s caregivers & provide ongoing positive feedback & encouragement as earned.

“It is our responsibility to offer these students who are deemed to be at risk for dropping out of high school, whether through school failure, poor attendance, &/or behavior problems need, the opportunity to get back on track.” said, Melvin L Burks, CEO of Hamilton Center, Inc. “These young people need consistent services from caring and supportive staff.”

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN.  Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

For questions or inquiries about services call (812)-231-8323 or visit www.hamiltoncenter.org.

Hamilton Center Announces New Program Coordinator for Military Veteran Program

Hamilton Center, Inc. welcomes Program Coordinator, Darrin Chaney, to the Military Veteran Program (MVP) at Hamilton Center, Inc.

Mr. Chaney is a 21-year Veteran of the U.S. Army serving in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm and worked 25 years for the State of Indiana before retiring. Mr. Chaney provides assistance, support and resources for military veterans and their families impacted by deployment, reintegration, mental health or and substance abuse issues. His interests are in assisting disabled veterans in receiving their allotted benefits and compensation as well as assisting homeless veterans.

Whether a veteran has recently returned or has been home for years, returning service members frequently suffer in silence and are reluctant to reach out for help. MVP offers mental health and emotional support to both veteran’s and their families. Services address issues related to post-traumatic stress disorder, transition and reintegration, survivor’s guilt, and substance use disorders.

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN. Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.


For information on the Military Veterans Program at Hamilton Center Services call (800) 742-0787 or visit hamiltoncenter.org.

Hamilton Center Announces New VCOP Care Manager Supervisor to Corporate Office

Hamilton Center, Inc. welcomes VCOP Care Manager Supervisor, Amanda Fields, BS, to the corporate office located at 620 8th Avenue in Terre Haute, IN.

Mrs. Fields is currently working towards her Master of Social Work from Indiana Wesleyan University and already holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Services, specializing in substance abuse counseling from the Indiana Wesleyan University. She has been employed with Hamilton Center for three years as a care manager working in the residential housing setting. Her interests are in developing and expanding community based services that will address treatment barriers related to mental health. 

Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN. Services are provided to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people who may be struggling with stress, life changes, or relationship issues as well as more serious problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, and serious mental illnesses.

For information on Hamilton Center Services call (800) 742-0787.