New urgent care center targets behavioral health

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published December 31, 2016


CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Macomb County has introduced its first 24/7 urgent behavioral health care center that provides support 365 days a year.

The Urgent Behavioral Health Care Center, or UBHC, has been providing this constant support to adults and children experiencing psychiatric or emotional crisis since opening its doors in Clinton Township on Oct. 25.

The goal of the UBHC is to help people return home safely, in most cases without the need for psychiatric hospitalization.

“The UBHC is a state-of-the-art alternative to the traditional psychiatric emergency room,” said John Kinch, executive director of Macomb County Community Mental Health. “The program provides immediate, face-to-face response to a variety of crisis situations, providing people with the resources and help they need to resolve their situations and return home, with a plan of action and follow-up in place before they leave the facility.”

The Macomb County Urgent Behavioral Health Care Center is located at 43800 Garfield Road in Clinton Township.

Marianne Frazho, UBHC program supervisor, said the center is always at the ready to resolve a multitude of crisis situations by offering individualized crisis counseling, family education, peer support, medication and psychiatric services, and links to medical care, mental health and substance use services, and community resources. Referrals can be made for further outpatient services when needed. In addition, all forms of health insurance are accepted.

“We don’t turn anyone away just because they don’t have insurance,” said Frazho, adding that the county and contracted employees at the center are capable of providing uninsured people with assistance in obtaining coverage like Medicaid. “We are the first (behavioral health center) to provides beds — eight beds for adults and three beds for children — which can be used for up to 23 hours at a time. We try to avoid hospitalization if we can keep them safe. We try to resolve the issue.”

Frazho said that since opening in late October, UBHC personnel have assisted an average of 270 people with behavioral health crises each month.

The UBHC is also a resource for law enforcement and first responders and may provide pre- and post-booking jail diversion services, if appropriate.

The MCCMH Crisis Center or Access Center may connect callers to the UBHC. Primary care doctors, mental health or substance use treatment providers, first responders, or local emergency rooms may also refer someone to the UBHC, Frazho said.

MCCMH is the public provider of mental health, substance use and developmental disability treatment services throughout Macomb County, with programs and services that are supported and funded, in part, by the state Department of Community Health and the Macomb County Board of Commissioners, and are administered by the Community Mental Health Board.

Walk-ins are welcome. For assistance, call (586) 466-6222.