Owen County Health Clinic To Provide Integrated Healthcare

The new clinic will combine Johnson-Nichols Clinic and Centerstone Behavioral Health Services to address both physical and mental needs of clients.

Doctor with stethoscope

Photo: Flickr (Alex E. Proimos)

The integrated approach addresses some preventable factors in early death among patients with severe mental illness.

Owen County residents seeking mental and physical health services will soon have access to both at a collaborative clinic in Spencer. The Johnson-Nichols Clinic and Centerstone are collaborating on the new facility.

Ruth Ralph, Executive Director for the Johnson-Nichols Clinic, calls the new facility “a dream come true, in the model to provide care to families.”

“There would actually be staffing involved so that the best outcomes for that patient would be done with both the mental health and the physical health collaboration,” she says.

Bob Seigmann, Senior Vice President for Healthcare Integration and Collaboration at Centerstone, says studies show people with severe mental illnesses often die much sooner than people in good mental health.

“They showed that persons with severe and persistent mental illnesses like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and severe depression, that those folks died 25 years younger than people in the norm of the population,” he says.

Seigmann says studies also show that two-thirds of the early deaths in patients suffering from mental illnesses are preventable.

Because the new facility in Spencer will house both physical and mental health professionals, Seigmann says clients are better able to access the help they need.

The clinic is funded in part by the Community Development Block Grant Program through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  Centerstone is contributing $625,000 to the project.

The clinic is set to break ground in April 2014 and is expected to be operational by April 2015.

Taylor Killough

Taylor Killough is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has studied anthropology and digital journalism. She has professional experience in education and communications and is excited to be a part of the award-winning team at WFIU/WTIU.

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