River Hills Behavioral Health Program Celebrates Its 6th Anniversary

June 26, 2017

River Hills Community Health Center opened their Behavioral Health Program in July of 2011 to meet an increasing need for more mental health services in the community. The need for these services increased after the Ottumwa Regional Health Center was sold to Regional Care, a Nashville, Tennessee based organization, and their Behavioral Health Program was discontinued. Prior to July 2011, five Psychiatrists lived in Ottumwa on a full-time basis, but that number has since decreased to zero. The Psychiatrists who currently practice in Ottumwa do so primarily by Tele-Psychiatry.

Igraph.pngnitially, River Hills Behavioral Health Program started with only two Therapists from Ottumwa Regional Health Center, followed by a third Therapist being hired one month later. After adding a fourth Therapist, River Hills Behavioral Health Program then began Tele-Psychiatry Services in November of 2012. The Program has seen steady growth in client numbers which was bolstered by the hiring of a Board Certified General Psychiatrist in January 2016 who can see all ages. Additionally, a Psychiatric Nurse and a Bi-Lingual Nursing Assistant were also hired.

Currently River Hills Community Health Center employs nine Therapists in three different Clinic Sites within their eight county service area. These nine Therapists specialize in various styles of Therapy that are effective for all ages. The therapies include: Play Therapy, Art Therapy, Addiction Therapy, Relationship Therapy, Parent Skill Development, Marital Counseling, Anger Management, Conflict Resolution, Depression, and Anxiety Management. Additional Treatment Modalities are also offered depending on the individual needs of the Patient and/or Family.

In late 2016, River Hills Community Health Center continued to expand their Behavioral Health Program by hiring a Doctorate Level Clinical Psychologist who now provides a wide range of Psychological Testing and IQ Testing for both children and adults.

In addition to the Wapello County Behavioral Health Clinic in downtown Ottumwa, there are also now Full-Time Behavioral Health Clinics in both Appanoose County (Centerville) and Keokuk County (Sigourney).

With the recent Wapello County Clinic Expansion Project in Ottumwa, River Hills Community Health Center has nearly doubled the physical size of their Behavioral Health Program which will allow for the hiring of additional Behavioral Health Therapists and Psychiatric Providers in the future.

Although River Hills Behavioral Health Program is not fully integrated physically within all the other departments of the Health Center at this time, patient referrals are continually being made back and forth across the various departments to ensure that comprehensive and holistic care is being provided to all River Hills patients.

Feel free to contact any of River Hills three Behavioral Health Clinic Sites for additional information or to schedule an appointment. The phone numbers are as follows:

Ottumwa (641) 683-5773
Centerville (641) 856-4400
Sigourney (641) 224-8061

Rick Johnson, Brian Simmons, and Steve Lee
River Hills Community Health Center