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SCL Health Montana Recognized for Excellence in Behavioral Health Service

475 x 285 SVH BH Award

The Montana Hospital Association has recognized SCL Health Montana with the 2021 Excellence in Behavioral Health Service Award. The award recognizes a healthcare organization that demonstrates vision and excellence in behavioral healthcare services.

The award acknowledges SCL Health Montana, which consists of three hospitals: St. James Healthcare, St. Vincent Healthcare and Holy Rosary Healthcare, and more than 50 SCL Health Medical Group clinics across the region, for its collaboration and innovation to expand access to behavioral healthcare across Montana.

“We’re proud to recognize SCL Health Montana for demonstrating leadership and vision toward improving behavioral health outcomes in their community,” said Rich Rasmussen, Montana Hospital Association CEO. “As Montana looks for ways to address substance use disorder, suicide and other behavioral health challenges facing our state, we can look to leaders like SCL Health Montana for proven strategies to reduce the toll of these conditions and return our neighbors to healthier, more productive lives.”

“We are honored to be recognized with this award,” said Tim Pellandini, Executive Director of SCL Health Medical Group Montana. “This award reaffirms the hard work and dedication of our care teams to improve services and treatment options for behavioral healthcare throughout Montana and Northern Wyoming. The need is great in our region, and we remain steadfast to our commitment to improve access and establish partnerships that will improve the health of all those we serve.”

In 2016, St. Vincent Healthcare opened a Behavioral Health Specialty Clinic, which provided outpatient behavioral health treatment, helping individuals address mental health and substance use disorders in a low-cost, low-stigma setting. It was the healthcare system’s first foray into behavioral health expansion, but it was only the beginning. Since 2016, SCL Health Montana has:

  • Piloted a nurse-led behavioral health program that created eight new integrated behavioral health primary care clinics to screen, assess, and treat behavioral health disorders
  • Partnered with the Montana Healthcare Foundation, the National Council for Behavioral Health, the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, and community-based mental health and substance use disorder treatment providers across the state to launch integrated behavioral health programs at 13 primary care and obstetric or midwifery clinics, reaching more than 10,000 individuals annually
  • Innovated the use of telepsychiatry in outpatient and emergency department settings, reducing costs and overcoming provider shortages to ensure access for patients
  • Collaborated with oneHealth, Rimrock Foundation, and other rural and critical access hospitals in Eastern Montana to build a robust continuum of care for pregnant women

SCL Health Montana is committed to continuing the expansion of integrated behavioral healthcare through its primary care clinics throughout Montana and providing clinical rotation opportunities to students to increase the number of behavioral health providers.

About SCL Health

SCL Health is a faith-based, nonprofit healthcare organization dedicated to improving the health of the people and communities we serve. Founded by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth in 1864, our health network provides comprehensive, coordinated care through eight hospitals, more than 180 physician clinics, home health, hospice, mental health, and safety-net services in Colorado and the Montana Wyoming region.