UAB School of Nursing Partners with Bibb Medical Center to Expand Access to Psychiatric Care – News

Two psychiatric and mental health nurses from the UAB School of Nursing are currently attending to patients at the center building clinic.

Author: Laura Gask
Media Representative: Hannah Echols

stream son bibTwo psychiatric and mental health nurses from the UAB School of Nursing are currently attending to patients at the center building clinic.
Photography: Frank Couch
As the need for psychiatric and mental health care resources grows, the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing and Bibb Medical Center are expanding their services to provide specialized care to patients throughout their lives. Currently, two of her psychiatric and mental health nurses are attending to patients at the Centreville clinic.

“We seek to replicate and expand our services to meet the needs of the people of Alabama and improve access to care, especially in resource-poor rural areas,” said Dr. said Dr. Michelle Talley, associate professor and interim associate dean of the medical department. Global Partnership in Nursing Schools. “We cannot be discouraged by barriers to care. Instead, we must focus on caring for the most vulnerable people in our state.”

Bibb Medical Center chief executive Joseph Merchant says there is a huge need for behavioral health care in the community. Before the clinic opened, patients had to travel to Birmingham or Tuscaloosa to receive these services. Merchant hopes that convenient access in a discreet environment will encourage patient care.

“Integrating this into the traditional primary care environment was exactly our model,” says Merchant. “We asked ourselves, ‘How can we normalize this as just medical care?’ It’s not mental health, it’s just health care. What you are there for, no one is smarter than your needs.”

CRNP nursing lecturer Brenda Mayfield has been seeing patients at the clinic since November 2020.

“I have seen patients who were very ill and are now very stable,” Mayfield said of the impact of care. “Bipolar and schizophrenic patients, I’ve seen some of them. They’re back at work, they’re back in school, they’re functioning well in the community. They’re not in the hospital, they’re not in the hospital. They’re not even on the road, so we’re continuing our efforts to build a support system around them.”

With the recent addition of CRNP Nursing Instructor Simone Durand, the clinic is now able to provide targeted care for patients throughout their lives three days a week.

“A lot of my work at Bibb has to do with helping families improve communication, better support children and help them cope with social stressors,” Durand said. “Anxiety, trauma and substance use can affect anyone. We have all had experience treating patients from age 3 to her 100.”

1204602766392163.wdAzf7z0Tex69dteFA2o height640Simone Durand, CRNP, Kimberly Shaw, Nursing Practice Student.
Photography: Frank Couch
The merchant wants people in the Bibb County community to know that resources are available locally.

“Anxiety and depression plague all of us and our entire family,” Merchant said. “Whether it’s the grief of losing a loved one or a new diagnosis in the family, you never know what the people you pass by or encounter are really going through. I think what we want is that this care is available and convenient.”

For UAB SON, this partnership not only provides educational opportunities for students, but also faculty practices that support the school’s teaching, research and service missions.

“Faculty practices are tied to our mission to target, serve, and improve access to care for vulnerable populations,” Tully said. “Faculty practice places professional clinicians and educators in the field who are committed to building a workforce to care for vulnerable people through practical experience. We are gaining valuable experience with our teaching staff who practice in the field, and our Doctor of Nursing Practice students join our teaching staff in these fields and carry out quality improvement projects.”

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