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Julian F. Keith Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Center unveils new patient care unit and innovative partnerships

The Julian F. Keith Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Center in Black Mountain, N.C. recently unveiled a new patient care unit and announced an innovative partnership to redefine recovery journeys. JFK is one of two alcohol and drug abuse treatment facilities in North Carolina operated by the NC Department of Health and Human Services. It currently provides inpatient and outpatient services, including medical detox, psychiatric stabilization, substance use disorder and mental health treatment using best practice standards — including Motivational Interviewing, Trauma-Informed Care and “Seeking Safety.”

More people than ever have mental health and substance use disorders in North Carolina with drug overdoses increasing 72% in recent years. The renovations and expansion of the facility reaffirms its commitment to addressing the rising needs of those battling high acuity substance use disorders. Recent patient care updates and additions made to the facility include:

  • Upgraded Patient Care Unit: Built on 54 years of service to the community, the newly renovated unit leads the way for revolution in patient care throughout North Carolina. With soothing color palettes and new safety features, such as enhanced cameras, centrally located observation stations, and an abundance of natural light which offer a space that is balanced for comfort and safety.
  • Collaborating for Change: With a new collaboration with Counterflow LLC and Buncombe County Emergency Services, two clinicians who meet with people post-overdose are embedded at JFK to facilitate entrance into inpatient care to help provide immediate, quality care to those in dire need — bridging the gap from emergency response to specialized treatment.
  • Peer Support – Before and After: JFK formally launched outpatient services in 2022 to offer comprehensive clinical assessment, individual/group/family therapy, peer support and medications for opioid use disorder. To enhance the recovery experience, JFK has now integrated peer support services throughout the treatment process. Patients can now lean on those who have walked in their shoes, ensuring continuous support from admission to reintegration into the community.

About 1.2 million people in North Carolina have a substance use disorder. Increasing access to prevention, treatment and recovery services is crucial. These new strides in advancing care, comfort and recovery will help JFK continue to provide high quality care to those in need. For more information on JFK, visit the facility website.

Improving behavioral health and resilience is a top priority for the department as the behavioral health care system in North Carolina has been stretched and under-resourced for decades. The most important step to take to increase behavioral health access is to expand Medicaid. North Carolina has never had adequate mental health services because they are unaffordable for most people. Until we close the coverage gap, needed care will remain out of reach.

Julian F. Keith ADATC is one of two state operated Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Centers specifically designed to provide medically monitored detoxification/crisis stabilization, and short-term treatment preparing adults with substance use and co-occurring disorders for ongoing community-based recovery services.
Walter B. Jones and Julian F. Keith ADATCs are operated by the NC Department of Health and Human Services-Division of State Operated Healthcare Facilities.

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