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SCHSC offering drug treatment programs

A drug treatment program sidelined by problems with documentation and record keeping is back in operation at the South Central Human Service Center, according to JoAnne Hoesel, director of the Division of Mental Health and Substance Abuse with North Dakota Department of Human Services.

“The license was reinstated on Dec. 24, 2013,” she said. “It is a provisional license.”

The provisional status means some additional reviews of the operation are planned but the addiction counseling service at SCHSC has no limitations on the types of services it can provide.

During the license suspension, outpatient treatment was provided at the North Dakota State Hospital. This was accomplished by shifting staff from the SCHSC to the State Hospital. Those services and staff have now been shifted back to the SCHSC, said Alex Schweitzer, Department of Human Services superintendent of institutions.

“We are closing some cases yet at the State Hospital as part of the transition,” he said. “But the staff is back in place at the Human Services Center. We’re hiring new staff. We’ve hired one and have another starting soon.”

Schweitzer said the agency has also stepped up its quality management program. The quality management program is an internal program within the agency meant to improve service. This included hiring a department manager. A previous department manager had resigned and program oversight was being provided by a manager at Southeast Human Service Center in Fargo.

“We’re building it all into the quality management program,” he said. “There will be monitoring by a supervisor at a level above the counselor and by the clinic manager.”

The substance abuse program at SCHSC served 63 clients at the time of the suspension. It offers counseling and treatment for alcohol and drug abuse. Some of the treatment it provides is court ordered for those convicted of driving under the influence or some drug crimes.

SCHSC serves Wells, Foster, Griggs, Stutsman, Barnes, Logan, LaMoure, McIntosh and Dickey counties.

Sun reporter Keith Norman can be reached at 701-952-8452 or by email at