A Letter from Our President

Natchaug had high-profile and behind-the-scenes success in past year

“Trusted, connected care” is what our entire system strives for every day. This year, this phrase is the theme of Hartford HealthCare’s annual reports – including Natchaug Hospital’s.

It’s a very fitting theme. In our fiscal year 2018 annual report you will read stories about our Zero Suicide initiative; Narcan distribution and education; MATCH expansion; our schools; community outreach; fighting the opioid epidemic and much more. All of these accomplishments enhance Natchaug’s reputation in the community as being both trusted and coordinated.But in addition to these highly visible examples, there is so much more, many times behind the scenes. Here are some examples:

Our Rivereast adult and young adult program in Vernon started a non-clinical support group for the survivors of overdose. This is a much needed addition – it’s hard  to find anyone who has not been touched by this widespread epidemic.

Continued support after discharge. The Quinebaug adult and young adult program in Dayville successfully launched aftercare groups for patients who have completed partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient treatment.

Thanks to a $15,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Care Plus adult and young adult programs in Groton and New London area responders were equipped with Naloxone (Narcan), a life-saving medication. A special thanks to the Foundation for its support.

The Mansfield young adult program offered a summer program for college students on break, offering proactive strategies to stabilize them and prepare them for the upcoming school year.

We are implementing new assessment tools to measure clinical and programmatic outcomes, as well as to meet a quality and safety balanced scorecard goal to reduce restraint and seclusion among the child and adolescent population.

In 2018, Natchaug launched manager rounding with inpatient clients, at the time of admission and discharge, creating meaningful touch points. Rounding creates individual personal connections with patients, addresses needs proactively, offers the opportunity for service recovery in the moment, and ultimately led to improved patient experience scores and feedback.

The inpatient beds continue to be full or near capacity daily, as we are serving both the Backus and Windham emergency departments, as well as surrounding communities. We are among the last organizations continuing to provide child and adolescent services in Connecticut.

Journey House no longer has a contract with the Department of Children and Family Services. The funding allocated to the program by the state was moved to the Community Support Services Department (CSSD) of the Judicial Branch. CSSD has such confidence in this highly structured program, which is the only locked facility for girls in the state, that they didn’t even put the contract out to bid.

These are just a few examples of why Natchaug is known for “trusted, connected care.” But none of this would be possible without the hard work and dedication of our staff. Thank you to everyone for helping us reach new heights in 2018, and for your work towards continued improvement in the next fiscal year.

Pat Rehmer

President, Hartford HealthCare Behavioral Health NetworkSenior Vice President, Hartford HealthCare