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Christiana Care opens healing center for most vulnerable patients

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Christiana Care has opened a new center for patients with mental illness, a poorly controlled chronic medication condition or a significant social need such as homelessness, hunger, or addiction. It will initially serve upwards of 200 patients who are identified as needing this enhanced level of coordinated care.

The Center for Hope and Healing at Wilmington Hospital aims to address medical and non-medical needs and prevent unnecessary emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and readmissions.

“We understand the challenges that our patients face, and we are here to walk with them every step of the way on the road to meeting their health goals,” said Linda J. Lang, M.D., chair of the Department of Psychiatry and medical director of the Behavioral Health Service Line at Christiana Care. “We are not only healing bodies and minds with excellence; we are serving souls with love.”

Services available at the center include:

  • Behavioral health to treat complex needs such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and severe depression.
  • Community interventions to address social determinants of health, such as homelessness, food insecurity and addiction.
  • Primary care to help patients take control of their health and appropriately manage chronic conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

Patients may be referred from Wilmington Hospital’s adult primary care practices, and Christiana Care’s Carelink CareNow Community Team program. Patients with complex needs are often high users of acute health services. This population comprises fewer than 10 percent of all patients but accounts for more than 20 percent of all hospital visits.

“This kind of coordinated care for patients with complex medical and non-medical needs benefits everyone,” Lang said. “By helping them to overcome their barriers to health and more effectively manage their behavioral health and chronic medical conditions, we help them to live the healthy lives they want to live. At the same time, we are helping them to prevent the need for emergency care or hospitalization, which means that we are potentially reducing their cost of care.”

Caption: Left to right: Kristin Achuff, Practice Manager, Outpatient Behavioral Health, Cassandra Rogers, MSW, LCSW, Behavioral Health Consultant, Jennifer Arriaga, CNMA, Senior Medical Assistant, Naiyma Hawkins, MSN, RN, PCCN, RN, Care Manager, Diane Bohner, M.D., MS, FACP, Clinical Lead for Complex Care; Medical Director for Carelink CareNow Special Populations, Louis Bab, BS, CADC, CCDP, Community Health Worker, Tannisha Hutchinson, LCSW, Senior Social Worker. 

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