Behavioral health is a healthcare term used to describe the range of mental wellness and how we cope with our daily challenges. Mental health and substance use disorders are part of behavioral health. South Country covers a wide range of benefits to treat both mental health and substance use disorders including assessments, outpatient treatment, and inpatient treatment.
Health refers to the general condition of the body or mind. In the same way that physical health changes can occur, a person’s mental health can vary throughout their lifetime. These changes can occur with age, after a significant life event, or due to stressors in a person’s environment.
Be aware of symptoms you are experiencing when your mental health is not at its best. A good time to talk to a professional is when symptoms start to interfere with your daily life. Symptoms may include changes in sleep pattern (either too much or too little), having a hard time completing daily tasks such as taking care of your kids or getting to work, pulling away from people you normally like to spend time with, and increased irritability or fighting with family or friends.
Start by talking to your primary care doctor. They can help you sort through symptoms you are experiencing. If needed, they can refer you to a provider who is more specialized in treating mental health conditions.
Substance Use Disorder
Substance Use Disorder (also known as Chemical Dependency) is the formal term for when someone’s repeated use of alcohol and/or drugs causes major impairment, including health problems, disability, and failure to meet major responsibilities at work, school, or home. (Taken from https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/disorders)
Substance Use Disorder treatment can come in many different forms. Inpatient treatment (residential treatment or rehab) is when someone lives at a facility for an amount of time and receives therapy and coping strategies to help them stay sober. Outpatient treatment is for those who are living in their homes but go to a treatment facility for therapy. Outpatient treatment could occur multiple times a week for several weeks at a time.
If you feel your drug and/or alcohol use is at a point where you would like to receive treatment, you must first begin with a Rule 25 assessment. This is an assessment that determines the level of treatment (inpatient or outpatient) that you would qualify for. To get information on where you can go to have a Rule 25 assessment completed, call or visit your county’s Human Services Department. You can also call Member Services at 1-866-567-7242 (TTY users call 711) and asked for someone in the South Country Behavioral Health Team to talk about a Rule 25 assessment.
Mental health conditions include depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Symptoms such as excessive worrying or fear or constant feelings of sadness and hopelessness that impact daily life can be treated successfully with medication, therapy or a combination of both.
South Country Health Alliance has a large list of mental health providers. Therapists and psychologists are trained to help people develop skills to manage overwhelming mental health symptoms. Primary care doctors, psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses may prescribe medications that help treat mental health illness. For help finding a provider, call Member Services at 1-866-567-7242 (TTY users call 711) or use the resources below.
SAMHSA is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This site provides information about mental health and can also be used to find treatment. Click this link to go to the SAMHSA website: https://www.samhsa.gov/
NAMI is the National Alliance on Mental Illness. This site provides a wealth of information for people struggling with mental health symptoms and provides support for family members. Use this link to get to the NAMI website: https://www.nami.org
Minnesota’s FREE, open-source, online, searchable database of Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Treatment providers and programs https://fasttrackermn.org/ Please note not all South Country providers are listed in this database, nor are all the providers listed part of South Country’s network. Ask any provider you select if they are part of South Country Health Alliance’s network before seeking care. You can also call Member Services and ask if the provider is in the network.
South Country Health Alliance believes mental health care is just as important as taking care of your physical health. We have staff here to support you and connect you with services that can help you manage your mental health. If you need help finding and making an appointment with a provider, please call Member Services at 1-866-567-7242 (TTY users call 711), and they will connect you with someone in the Behavioral Health Team.
For more resources on Substance Use Disorders please visit https://www.drugabuse.gov/
SAMHSA is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This site provides information about mental health and can also be used to find treatment. Click this link to go to the SAMHSA website https://www.samhsa.gov/