Communicare serves over 1,000 local citizens

Published 4:30 pm Thursday, September 5, 2019

By Myra Bean

Communicare is a gem that most people in Panola County probably have no contact. It is a lifesaver to many who do.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Communicare offers multiple treatment options for co-occurring disorders (substance use disorders and mental health disorders).

Located at 100 East Frontage Rd., Sardis, they “serve adults with a mental illness and children who may have an emotional disturbance. We also serve individuals with substance abuse issues as well as individuals with intellectual disabilities who are on Medicaid Waiver,” said Dr. Executive Director Sandy Rogers, who has an office in Oxford.

Rogers addressed the Panola County Board of Supervisors recently to request a three percent increase in their yearly budget from $40,170 to $41,375. There has not been an increase since Rogers came on board in 2011. The funds will be used to help cover the administrative costs as well as some indigent costs of services, according to Rogers.

The Panola County office staff a county office manager, Megan Taylor, LPC; five community support specialists, two mental health therapists, six school therapists, two secretariat assistants and one intensive therapist who works primarily with the courts and intensive cases to keep individuals out of the hospital.

Communicare has served Panola County for almost 50 years and also serve Tate, Yalobusha, Marshall, Calhoun and Lafayette counties. Since they began the new electronic health record in November, the facility has seen 1,076 unduplicated individuals in Panola County. Of those, 299 were children, 704 were adults and 72 adults with substance use disorders. Individuals range from about age 4 to 84.

Child Services

Communicate serves children from 4-years-old and up. They offer a variety of services for children. They offer in school-therapists who see the child while at school so the parent does not have to miss work. “The schools sign a Memorandum of Understanding allowing us to do this in the schools,” Rogers said.

They provide individual therapy, group therapy, community support services as well as targeted case management. Communicare has recently been certified to provide Mississippi Youth Around the Clock or MYPAC services.

“This is an intensive service for children returning to their families from an inpatient hospitalization or a child at risk for an out of home placement,” Rogers said.

MAP Team (Making a Plan) is offered  and that is a group of agencies coming together to wrap services around a child to support them when their needs are larger than what one agency can do.

Day Treatment is also offered to the schools each year. “That service is essential. However many schools do not have the room or staff to assist in providing the service. The skills that are taught are social, problem solving and behavioral management,” rogers said.

Communicare also provides alcohol and drug prevention programs in all of the schools that will allow them to come in and provide that program.

Adult services

Adults are offered a variety of services, including the traditional mental health services as well as a host of substance abuse services. Individual, group and family therapies are available as well as medication management services, a day program, DUI assessments, and intensive outpatient services to individuals who want treatment after work in the evenings. SOAR is provided to individuals who are trying to get their disability approved.

In addition, there are also a 30-day residential and a 60 to 90-day transitional residential substance abuse services offered at the Haven House in Oxford. While in treatment, medically assisted treatment is offered to assist with addictions.

IDD services are provided to individuals with a diagnosis of IDD and are on the Medicaid Waiver or receive 1915I benefits. They provide day services, behavior supports, supported employment, supervised living and supported living as well as In-Home Respite and Community Respite.

“We offer crisis services 24 hours a day and assist with individuals needing inpatient treatment. Our goals is to work with families and the courts and prevent the hospital stay by providing services in the community,” Rogers said.

“We are here in the community, part of the community to help people who live in the community and people often do not know what all we do,” she said. If someone knows someone who could use the services Communicare provide, Rogers invites them to call the local office.

This is a list of all of the services Communicare provides:

Adult MAP Teams, Community Support Services, Consultation and Education, Day Treatment, DUI Diagnostic Assessment for 2nd and Subsequent Offenders, Emergency/Crisis Response, Intensive Outpatient Services, Making A Plan (MAP) Teams, Mississippi Youth Program Around the Clock (MYPAC), Outpatient Therapy, Peer Support, Intensive Community Outpatient Recovery team (i-CORT), Physician/Psychiatric Services, Primary Residential Services, Pre-Evaluation Screening for Civil Commitment, Psychosocial Rehabilitation, Recovery Support Services, SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR), Sober Living, Substance Abuse Prevention Services, Targeted Case Management, Withdrawal Management Services, Withdrawal Management Services, TADDI, Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT), Wraparound Facilitation, Behavior Support, Community Respite, Day Habilitation, Day Services – Adult, Home and Community Supports, In – Home Respite, Job Discovery, Prevocational Services, Supervised Living, Supported Employment and Supported Living.