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WakeMed News Releases

June 13, 2018

Network for Advancing Behavioral Health (NABH) brings together local providers and resources to better serve our communities

RALEIGH, N.C. (June 13, 2018) – WakeMed Health & Hospitals announces a collaborative effort to create a connected community to better serve individuals with behavioral health and substance use issues. The collaboration, called the Network for Advancing Behavioral Health (NABH), addresses the need for a coordinated outpatient care system across Wake, Johnston and Durham counties to help patients and families meet their health and wellness needs and improve outcomes.

The goal is to bring together community providers and resources to enhance access to the right care at the right time, to better coordinate existing resources, to address the social determinants of health and, ultimately, to improve the quality of care and outcomes for patients and families suffering with mental health and substance use issues.

Along with WakeMed, the NABH includes a diverse network of regional and statewide providers of high-quality psychiatric, counseling, residential, crisis, and substance use services, including:

In addition, Blaze Advisors, a nationally recognized and North Carolina-based consulting firm, was a key contributor to the development of this new connected community model.

Based on patient need and network capacity, the NABH will continue to build and expand its network of providers and community-based organizations to ensure all WakeMed patients can quickly access the highest quality clinical and community services. WakeMed is leading this community effort.

“Combining technology and collaboration to streamline and accelerate a patient’s transition from the hospital to the right outpatient care provider makes this collaboration unique,” explains Rick Shrum, vice president & chief strategy officer, WakeMed Health & Hospitals. “Open communication and coordination among NABH providers along with the use of advanced analytics will help eliminate the inefficiency of incorrect referrals, which has been a barrier to care in the mental health sector across the country.” 

"Collaborations between the Network providers of the NABH and WakeMed are improving patient care in real time,” says Tad Clodfelter, Psy.D, NABH board chairman and president & CEO, SouthLight Healthcare. “This is the right effort at the right time and the right thing to do for patients, for their families, and for our community." 

During WakeMed’s 2017 fiscal year, emergency department visits for patients with substance use and behavioral health issues totaled more than 38,000. And days in the hospital for behavioral health and substance use patients totaled more than 12,000 during the same fiscal year. Shrum adds, “These numbers tell the story of the need for a collaborative community effort like the NABH, and we are pleased to convene this novel collaboration for our community.”

Though in its infancy, the NABH is already seeing some very positive results for patients and families in the community. Patients are receiving greater and quicker access to the services they need and deserve. The NABH is also committed to collecting and analyzing patient data to determine other gaps in care processes in order to continually improve the offerings of the NABH.

Communities throughout the United States – and particularly those in Wake County and the surrounding counties – face the need for coordinated mental health care.  The 2016 Wake County Community Needs Assessment report once again points to mental health and substance abuse as priorities for our community to address. They have been priority areas for more than 12 years.  The country’s opioid epidemic as well as the school shootings that continue to devastate communities also indicate the widespread need for strong community collaborations like NABH. 

About WakeMed Health & Hospitals 

Serving the community since 1961, WakeMed Health & Hospitals is a nationally recognized, private, not-for-profit health care organization founded and based in Raleigh, N.C. The largest health system in Wake County, WakeMed exists to improve the health and well-being of our community by providing outstanding, compassionate, patient- and family-centered care to all.

The 919-bed system comprises a network of facilities throughout the Triangle area, delivering health and wellness services that bring added value to the communities we serve. WakeMed is a leader in cardiac and vascular care, women’s and children’s services, emergency medicine and trauma care, physical rehabilitation, orthopaedics and neurosciences. Specialty facilities include the WakeMed Heart Center, Children’s Hospital, Women’s Pavilion and Birthplace, Women’s Hospital at WakeMed North, WakeMed Rehabilitation Hospital, Adult and Children’s Emergency Departments and a Level 1 Trauma Center.

WakeMed’s team of more than 9,100 employees, 1,500 volunteers, 1,200 affiliated physicians, and the more than 300 physicians employed by WakeMed Physician Practices use the most advanced technologies along with the best minds and the biggest hearts to ensure the finest quality in health care and community health. For more information, visit www.wakemed.org.

The Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses is the only specialty nursing organization dedicated to medical-surgical nursing practice.  Its mission is to promote excellence in medical-surgical nursing.  The Medical-Surgical Certification Board is a professional organization whose mission is to validate excellence in medical-surgical nursing. 


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