Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health Philosophy
Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health provides substance abuse and mental health treatment services for adults, adolescents and children. Treatment options include detoxification, inpatient and residential programs, intensive outpatient care, halfway house, individual and family therapy, relapse prevention and aftercare groups, and medication-assisted treatment.
Areas of Specialization
Residential treatment programs provide housing (food and meals) in addition to treatment for substance abuse. Some facilities offer only short-term residential treatment, some offer only long-term treatment and others offer both, ranging from a few days to many months, based on patient needs.
Eating Disorder Treatment
Many mental health professionals view eating disorders (including anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder, along with other dysfunctional eating patterns) as a food addiction – in that food is used in ways other than as fuel or a source of pleasure. Some, but not all, addiction treatment programs include eating disorder treatment as part of the service menu. Also, an eating disorder may be a dual-diagnosis or a co-occurring disorder with drug or alcohol addiction.
Meet the Staff
Kay Adams MSSW
Certified by the National Association of Cognitive Behavioral Therapists in Rational Living Therapy, training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy.
Nancy Allen MS
Licensed Professional Counselor.
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ABOUT GUNDERSEN BEHAVIORAL HEALTH
Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health, one of dozens of care facilities operated by the nonprofit Gundersen Health System (GHS) throughout western Wisconsin, southeastern Minnesota, and northeast Iowa, offers residential and outpatient treatment for adults and adolescents faced with addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders**. In addition to its designated psychiatric unit, the La Crosse-based GHS also runs two gender-specific residential homes, provides specialized treatment for *eating disorders*, sexual assault, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Medically-monitored detox is available on site.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
Treatment at Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health begins with an assessment to determine the appropriate level of care. Those requiring medical assistance begin with the detox program, where they may access Methadone and Suboxone, while others proceed directly with residential or outpatient treatment.
Treatment consists of a combination of individual and group psychotherapy, educational groups, and family counseling. Children and teens with behavioral problems may benefit from consultations with a Pediatric Care specialist. Medication management and transitional assistance services are also available as needed.
Specialized treatment services are available for younger clients with behavioral health concerns. Many of the same treatment methods are applied, but with a focus on tailoring content for younger clients.
Programming is available for a range of behavioral concerns including addressing trauma from criminal activity and sexual abuse. Family counseling is encouraged to rebuild clients’ support networks. Services to help prevent suicides are available 24/7 and can be easily accessed by contacting the facility.
Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health’s treatment team includes psychiatrists, nurses and nurse practitioners, social workers, recreational and occupational therapists, and Master-level therapists and substance abuse counselors. The facility maintains its accreditations and encourages staff members to pursue continued specialization in their fields.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
GHS Behavioral Health’s 30-bed residential facility is divided into separate units for adults, adolescents, and others in need of specialized care. Though not a luxury facility, the behavioral health residential wing houses clients in private rooms, offering “abundant natural light, warm colors and access to outdoor courtyards with green space and water features”. Both gender-specific residences - Unity Home for Men and Unity Home for Women - are in quiet, residential neighborhoods in La Crosse. Each can accommodate eight clients.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
The single anonymous alum who gave feedback about Gundersen Health System to date gave a positive review.
The alum gave the facility five out of five stars for the treatment effectiveness, staff support, and the extracurricular opportunities available, amongst other categories. “Received appropriate treatment for my condition, one on one care with staff,” they added. However, the alum gave only three out of five stars for meals and nutrition.
On CiteHealth, a pair of Unity House for Men alumni shared highly polarized recovery experiences. “This place changed my life,” the anonymous five out of five star reviewer maintained.  “Great staff who will do whatever they can to help you. You get out what you put in and I am so happy I got a chance to be part of the house.” By contrast, the one out of five star reviewer referred to Unity House as a “very poorly run facility”, stating: “They have no understanding of the ‘Root Cause’ of addiction nor do they address it.”
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
The three loved ones polled by Rehabs.com about GHS as of this writing shared above average ratings. When asked, on a scale from one to five, how likely they were to recommend the facility to others, the three reviewers gave an average rating of 3.67 out of five stars.
The loved ones gave four out of five stars for connectivity, facility cleanliness, and affordability. In their commentary, one described the staff as “friendly,” while another wrote that the “location and rooms were nice.” “Close to home to area is known, but not too involving,” the third noted, adding: “seemed similar to most programs.”
Gundersen Health System Behavioral Health accepts insurance, but may not be covered under all insurance plans. The facility suggests that prospective clients contact their insurance providers to determine coverage benefits. Financial assistance may also be available for those who qualify. Clients may receive a discounted rate for medically-necessary services if they don’t have insurance.
Published on December 2017
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