‘It will take all of us.’ Mental health services expand ahead of Larimer County effort

Mental health services expand ahead of Larimer County effort

Garcia House, open since January, is intended to serve “really high-need individuals who have substance abuse and mental health” issues, said Cali Thole, SummitStone’s director of forensic services.

Under its operating license it can’t provide services for someone with a mental health disorder alone. There needs to be a co-occurring diagnosis with the primary diagnosis of substance abuse.

Garcia House also brings a new payment option to the table; Medicaid funding for substance abuse treatment in a residential setting. “This is brand new for Colorado,” Thole said.

And, it provides treatment closer to home. “We know when people have to get treatment outside the community it’s harder to stay connected to support systems and it makes the transition back to the community more challenging,” she said.

Some puzzle pieces are still missing, including withdrawal treatment, which Garcia House will not provide.

Those needing detox will still be sent to Greeley, private facilities or the county behavioral health center when it opens, Thole said. “Ongoing residential treatment to address substance abuse disorders, that’s the piece we will provide.”

Garcia House will “fit nicely” with the resources to come at the behavioral health center and those provided at other Larimer and Weld county facilities, Thole said.

“Any time we can add resources to the community and provide services that are needed it makes me hopeful systems are starting to address issues about substance abuse and mental health. Providing treatment locally is really important.”

Garcia House and Northpoint will provide outpatient and inpatient treatment such as group and individual therapy and medication management, including medically-assisted treatment with drugs such as methadone and vivitrol. Garcia House is partnering with a methadone clinic if needed, Thole said.

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