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mental health

North Dakota’s Human Service Department says its eight regional human service centers and four satellite clinics are open to provide on-site and community based behavioral health services, during a time of stress brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dan Cramer, the director of the South Central Human Services Center in Jamestown, said when the pandemic first started, a lot of services were switched to telehealth. But he said as things went on, they realized some people were really struggling, and those with the greatest amount of illness were struggling the most.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

An interim Legislative committee is studying North Dakota’s mental health commitment statute – and procedures – to see if it should be changed.

But the superintendent of the State Hospital in Jamestown said it’s a good law.

Dr. Rosalie Etherington said it has been consistently recognized as good law. But she said she hopes the study will look at how that law is being carried out as designed.

"Do we need to change?" Etherington said in an interview. "Do we need to educate judges and providers about what the statute actually says?"

Carly's Story: Addiction and Prison

Feb 23, 2017
Wendy Kotchian

Journeys Through Justice is a new series of stories and interviews about people caught in North Dakota’s Criminal justice system. A large majority of the people serving time in the state’s prisons and jails are addicted to drugs and or alcohol. Many also suffer from mental health problems. There’s bi-partisan agreement that the cost and the number of people cycling in and out of the system are both way too high.

The director of Mental Health America of North Dakota says people with mental illnesses often get caught in what she describes as a “revolving door.”

"Between the ER (emergency room) and the in-patient treatment, jail or maybe the state hospital, they just keep revolving through the system," said Susan Helgeland. She says stopping that revolving door is the purpose behind a two year grant the association received to work with the Cass County Jail. Helgeland says the money will help the jail staff assist inmates with mental health issues to receive some post-release planning.

Fargo news anchor starts mental health support foundation

Feb 13, 2013

A Fargo news anchor is starting a foundation to help youth who are struggling with depression.  Prairie Public's Danielle Webster has the story.

Hoeven and Klobuchar tour Fargo VA Hospital

Jan 10, 2013

North Dakota Senator John Hoeven and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar toured Fargo’s VA Medical Center to discuss veterans issues.  Prairie Public’s Danielle Webster has the story.

New program treats addictions and mental health issues

Aug 17, 2012

The retiring director of the North Dakota Department of Human Services says she’s proud of a new program to help treat people who have chronic addictions plus serious mental health issues.

Carol Olson says the program is called I-D-D-T – or “Integrated Dual Disorder Treatment.” And she says the program has so far shown tremendous success.