Where to Go

A variety of services for mental health, IDD, alcohol and drug addictions, and Alzheimer’s disease and other Dementia are available across the state. To find the nearest DMH Certified Service Providers in your area, use the search form below and enter your county. Please contact the certified provider directly regarding availability of services.

DMH Certified Service Providers

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The MH/IDD Joint Conference is set for October 29, 2013 to October 31, 2013 at the IP Casino in Biloxi.

Mark Your Calendars: The MH/IDD Joint Conference is set for October 29 – 31 at the IP Casino in Biloxi. The theme is Community: The Pathway to Belonging. Please click the following link below to register:

  • Planning forms have been submitted for the following disciplines:
    • Recreation Therapist (ATRA)


  • 10.5 Hours of Continuing Education Credit has been awarded for the following disciplines:
    • Continuing Medical Education
    • (DMH) Mental Health Therapist
    • (DMH) Addictions Therapist
    • (DMH) Community Support Specialist
    • (DMH) Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD) Therapist
    • Licensed DMH Administrator
    • (DMH) Peer Support Specialist
    • Psychologist (APA)
      • Also accredited for 1.5 hours of APA Ethics/Legal hours
    • Social Worker (MBOE)
      • Also accredited for 6.5 hours of SW Cultural Diversity
      • Also accredited for 1.5 hours of SW Ethics
    • Counselor/ LPC (NBCC)
      • Also accredited for 1.5 hours of LPC Ethics
    • CHES (Certified Health Education Specialist)
    • Alcohol and Drug Counselor (NAADAC)


  • 10.0 Hours of Continuing Education Credit has been awarded for the following disciplines:
    • Nursing Home Administrator


  • 1.05 CEU’s have been awarded for the following disciplines:
    • University CEUs/Teacher



  • Click the link below to download the conference agenda.

Response To Mental Health Conference In Washington

On June 3, the President and Vice President hosted a National Conference on Mental Health in Washington. While millions of Americans and thousands of Mississippians struggle with mental health problems, those who need help are many times afraid to seek it because of the shame and secrecy unfortunately associated with mental illness. The conference brought together people from access the country, including mental health advocates, educators, health care providers, faith leaders, and individuals who have struggled with mental health problems, to discuss how we can all work together to reduce stigma, and help people struggling with mental health problems recognize the importance of reaching out for assistance.
Mental health problems are surprisingly common. In fact, they affect most families at some point. Studies also show that most people with mental illnesses get better and many recover completely. Recovery not only benefits the individual, it benefits the entire community. One major barrier to recovery, however, is stigma – the aura of shame and blame that surrounds mental health problems. This fear of mental health problems is a major problem in itself. Stigma gets in the way of proper treatment and recovery. There are ways, however, to counter stigma and our goal is to have the entire state of Mississippi join our efforts to combat stigma. Share the facts about mental health problems and about people with these problems. Speak up if you hear or read something that isn’t true. Treat people with mental health needs with respect and dignity, as you would anybody else. Don’t label people with mental health problems by using terms like “crazy.” Support people with mental health problems by helping to develop community resources. Teach children about mental health. Help them see that these problems are like any other illness and can be treated. These are just a few things you can do to help break down the walls of stigma.
According to SAMHSA the prevalence of serious mental health conditions in the 18-25 years of age group is almost double that of the general population, yet young people have the lowest rate of help-seeking behaviors. This group has a high potential to minimize future disability if social acceptance is broadened and they receive the right support and services early on. This is one of the reasons the Mississippi Department of Mental Health (DMH) launched a public awareness campaign, Think Again, which targets young adults in 2009. The opportunity for recovery is more likely in a society of acceptance, and this initiative is meant to inspire young people to serve as the mental health vanguard, motivating a societal change toward acceptance and decreasing the negative attitudes that surround mental illness.
We must remember that behavioral health is an essential part of overall health. Most people don’t think twice about seeking treatment for diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure or other health conditions. As a nation and a state, we need to change the way we look at mental illness in order to dispel the stigma. This also includes the way we look at recovery. Last year, DMH launched an awareness campaign focusing on the definition and components of recovery. Recovery is a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential. Recovery is unique to each individual and can truly only be defined by the individual themselves. What might be recovery for one person may be only part of the process for another. Supports and services help people with mental illness and substance abuse issues in their recovery journeys.
We all possess the fundamental and inherent value to be accepted and treated with respect and worth. We want individuals to restore, rebuild and reclaim control of their lives by increasing their resilience and focusing on their strengths. We need to remind our fellow citizens that people should seek treatment for substance abuse and mental health with the same urgency as they would any other health condition. We need to continue to have conversation on mental health in order to increase understanding and awareness for our nation and the state of Mississippi.
Ms. Diana S. Mikula
Executive Director
Mississippi Department of Mental Health

24th Annual Serendipity Is Thursday, September 5th

WHITFIELD— September is approaching fast, and art admirers across the state know what that means – Mississippi State Hospital’s annual Serendipity art show and silent auction is almost here.

Always held the first Thursday of September, this year’s Serendipity is set for Thursday, September 5, from 11:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. on the MSH campus. The art show and silent auction plays host to artwork created solely by patients and residents of the hospital’s Art Services program and has through the decades become a draw for people from all over the state who know they’ll find pieces there they won’t be able to get anywhere else.

“Serendipity has been described as one of Mississippi’s best kept secrets, and I think that’s definitely true,” Art Services Director Evelyn Bates said. “The state has a rich tradition in music, literature, and art, and the work on display in Serendipity continues that tradition.”

The art and ceramic work on display in the show is all created by individuals served through the MSH Art Services Department. They are patients from across the hospital’s services, including adults and children served at the hospital and residents of Jaquith Nursing Home, located on the MSH campus.

The art program gives them a chance to express themselves through their work, whether they have any formal training in the arts or not. For many, it is an important part of the therapeutic process.

“The act of creating the work has a real therapeutic value for many of our artists, and then seeing it on display during Serendipity gives the artists a real feeling of success and a boost to their self-esteem, knowing that other people place such a high value on it,” Bates said.

And people do place value on the work – all of the pieces on display are also available to own via silent auction. Interested visitors just need to write a bid down on the available forms, and if they have the highest offer when bidding closes at 6 p.m. they’ll get to take it home with them.

Everyone is welcome to attend the show, but visitors don’t need to be present to win – all they have to do is have the highest bid that was placed. Anyone really setting their sights on a specific piece will probably want to be there when bidding ends though, since the closing minutes have been known to see some people scrambling around trying to leave their competitors with no time to spare for a higher bid of their own.

Last year was a record for Serendipity, with every single piece that was available ending up with a bid on it. As in years past, this year’s selection will include including paintings, drawings, collages and ceramics.

“No two years are alike, and no two pieces are the same,” Bates said. “We’re looking forward to showcasing our artists’ skill and will be happy for everyone to come see the work they have created.”

MSH, a program of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health, was founded in 1855 and facilitates improvement in the quality of life for Mississippians who are in need of mental health, chemical dependency or nursing home services by rehabilitating to the least restrictive environment and utilizing a range of psychiatric and medical services that reflect the accepted standard of care and are in compliance with statutory and regulatory guidelines. The hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission.



MSH Art Instructor Ron Lindsey looks over some of the pieces in last year’s show before the bidding began. 2012 was a record year for Serendipity, with every piece on display bid on and purchased by visitors.



Pictured below is one of the pieces that will be on display in this year’s Serendipity art show and silent auction at Mississippi State Hospital on Thursday, September 5. Artwork will include paintings in a variety of media as well as ceramics. Bidding will be open from 11:30 a.m. until 6 p.m., and the show is open to the public.



Pictured below is an Serendipity 2013 Invite Card

14th Annual Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease and Psychiatric Disorders in the Elderly

August 14 – August 16, 2013

14th Annual Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease and Psychiatric Disorders in the Elderly

“Shaping the Future”

Host/Vendor check-in Tuesday, August 13, 2013

MSU Riley Center    Meridian, MS

Register online at http://www.regonline.com/msalzconference2013

Request for support letter

2013 Alzheimer’s Conference Host Vendor Registration Packet

2013 Alzheimer’s Conference Registration Brochure

2013 Alzheimer’s Conference Award Nomination

General Conference Information

Mississippians Trained In Mental Health First Aid

In response to recent shooting tragedies in the United States, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) has become a hot topic in Washington and Mississippi. In May, the Mississippi Department of Mental Health used British Petroleum grant monies to certify a cadre of trainers in both the adult and youth versions of MHFA.   These certified trainers will be available to provide education through workshops to community leaders such as pastors, teachers, and civic groups, along with families and friends interested in learning more about mental health issues. 
“With knowledge, comes understanding,” said Mardi Allen, DMH Clinical Services Liaison. “Communities that have a better understanding of mental health issues are shown to have less stigma around mental illness. Hopefully with more community understanding, those who suffer from mental illness will receive assistance and support they need rather than eschewed by our schools, churches and the general public.”
Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that helps the public identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illness, substance use disorders and behavioral disorders.   Mental Health First Aid is offered in the form of an interactive 12-hour course that presents an overview of mental illness and substance use disorders in the U.S. and introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common treatments. Those who take the 12-hour course as Mental Health First Aiders learn a 5-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to help an individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care.
Both versions of MHFA includes content on how important it is to provide assistance to individuals with mental health problems such as depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, self-injury, and substance use disorders. In addition, participants learn to recognize and handle crisis situations such as suicidal behaviors, acute stress reaction following trauma, panic attack, acute psychotic behavior, and drug overdose.
For information on how to schedule a Mental Health First Aid training, contact Scott Sumrall at the Mississippi Department of Mental Health at 601-359-1288.

May is Mental Health Month

May is Mental Health Month


Wellness—it’s essential to living a full and productive life. We may have different ideas about what wellness means, but it involves a set of skills and strategies that prevent the onset or shorten the duration of illness and promote recovery and well-being. It’s about keeping healthy as well as getting healthy.


This May is Mental Health Month, the Mississippi Department of Mental Health is spreading the word about why pathways to wellness are so important.


Pathways to Wellness— this year’s theme of May is Mental Health Month—calls attention to strategies and approaches that help all Americans achieve wellness and good mental and overall health.


Wellness is more than an absence of disease. It involves complete general, mental and social well-being. And mental health is an essential component of overall health and well-being. The fact is our overall well-being is tied to the balance that exists between our emotional, physical, spiritual and mental health.


Whatever our situation, we are all at risk of stress given the demands of daily life and the challenges it brings—at home, at work and in life. Steps that build and maintain well-being and help us all achieve wellness involve a balanced diet, regular exercise, enough sleep, a sense of self-worth, development of coping skills that promote resiliency, emotional awareness, and connections to family, friends and the community.


These steps should be complemented by taking stock of one’s well-being through regular mental health checkups. Just as we check our blood pressure and get cancer screenings, it’s a good idea to take periodic reading of our emotional well-being. One recent study said everyone should get their mental health checked as often as they get a physical, and many doctors routinely screen for mental health, which typically include a series of questions about lifestyle, eating and drinking habits and mental wellness. But a checkup doesn’t necessarily require a special trip to the doctor. There are also online screening tools you can use. While conditions like depression are common—roughly 1 in 5 Americans have a mental health condition—they are extremely treatable.


Fully embracing the concept of wellness not only improves health in the mind, body and spirit, but also maximizes one’s potential to lead a full and productive life. Using strategies that promote resiliency and strengthen mental health and prevent mental health and substance use conditions lead to improved general health and a healthier society: greater academic achievement by our children, a more productive economy, and families that stay together.


For more information, click here.



Wendy D. Bailey

Director of Public Information

Mississippi Department of Mental Health


Mississippi Treasure Quest and Run/Walk for Children’s Mental Health Awareness

Mississippi Treasure Quest and Run/Walk for Children’s Mental Health Awareness

Be part of the first RUN/WALK for Children’s Mental Health Awareness on May 4, 2013 at Jamie Fowler Boyll Park off Lakeland Drive in Jackson (next to Smith-Wills Stadium). The 5K run ($25) will start at 8 a.m., followed by a Fun Run for families (free) with medals for everyone. Runner will receive a “SWAG” bag as part of the registration and a free moisture wicking tech shirt!


This RUN/WALK is part of the Mississippi 2013 Treasure Quest. An exciting event that hosts a scavenger hunt, bounce houses, horses, entertainment, food, and even zip lines! For more information visit, http://msrun.weebly.com/.


6th Annual MS School for Addiction Professionals

In an effort to help educate Mississippi’s addiction, treatment, and prevention professionals the 6th Annual Mississippi School for Addiction Professionals, hosted by the Mississippi Department of Mental Health’s (DMH) Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services, will be held April 9-12 at the Hattiesburg Convention Center.
“We provide a learning experience where professionals or nonprofessionals can come together to learn from innovative individuals who are leaders in the field of substance abuse treatment and prevention,” said Jerri Avery, DMH Director of the Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services.  “The MS School is an excellent way to educate people on the best practices available to produce the best outcomes for those we serve.”
The MS School for Addiction Professionals will offer exciting plenary sessions, special events and a variety of courses in prevention, intervention and treatment, all of which are designed to enhance the skills and knowledge of each participant. The MS School offers many courses that address contemporary topics to help professionals remain abreast as to the latest trends in their areas. The MS School is open to treatment professionals, service providers, educators, parents, nurses, social workers, school counselors, law enforcement, faith based organizations, concerned citizens and others.
Keynote presenters include: Tonier “Neen” Cain, “Dealing with Trauma and the Road to Recovery;” Dr. Brian Sims, “Trauma Informed Care: The Road to Recovery,” Jonathan Cloud, “The Neuro-Science of Aggression,” Marshall Fisher, “Current Trends in Prescription Drug Abuse,” Dr. David Mee-Lee, “Helping People Change: What You Can Do To Make or Break the Therapeutic Alliance,” Becky Vaughn, “Healthcare Reform,” and Penny Norton, “Prescription Drug Abuse: A National Public Health Crisis.” 
More than 23 million people, aged 12 or older, needed treatment for a substance use disorder in the United States in 2007, and in Mississippi alone, 183,000 people and their families are affected by this disease. Each year, the alcohol and drug residential treatment centers in Mississippi certified by DMH’s Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services, provide residential treatment to more than 6,000 Mississippians suffering from substance abuse and dependence problems.
For more information about The Mississippi School for Addiction Professionals, contact 601-359-1288 or visit http://www.themsschool.ms/. If you or someone you know is in need of treatment, call the DMH’s Helpline at 1-877-210-8513.

More than 500 People Attend Alzheimer’s Conference

“Drawing on Our Collective Wisdom,” the 13th Annual Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease and Psychiatric Disorders in the Elderly was held August 15 – 17, 2012 in Olive Branch. This is the only statewide Conference on Alzheimer’s disease designed to meet the needs of both professionals and caregivers.


Understanding Early Onset Alzheimer’s Disease

Review of Frontal Lobe Dementias

Let’s Talk Wild Turkey: Straight Talk for Seniors about Alcohol and Drugs

Alzheimer’s Disease: What Is It? Who Gets It? How Do You Prevent It?

Recognizing Possibilities: Accommodating Brain Changes in Dementia

The Power of PASSR

Cultural Competency in Dementia Care

Searching for Personhood: Unlocking the Self Through Expressive Arts

Grandma Did What? She Went Where? Anxiety and Disruptive Wandering in Alzheimer’s Disease – Why Does It Happen and What to Do

SAMHSA’s Toolkit on Evidenced Based Practices for Treating Depression in Older Adults

The Use and Effectives of the Virtual Dementia Tour

Granny’s Garden: The Future Impact of Marijuana on Baby Boomers

The Role of the Support Group for Individuals with Dementia

Sometimes You Are the Pigeon and Sometimes You are the Statue: Finding Peace in a Stressful Journey

Third National Guardianship Summit – Standards Reform

Older Oklahomans Learning to Direct Recovery

Mississippi Selected for Youth Diversion Grant

Mississippi is one of the eight states competitively selected to participate in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Collaborative, Improving Diversion Policies and Programs for Justice Involved Youth with Co-Occurring Mental Health and Substance Abuse Disorders.

Sandra Parks and Pam Smith of DMH wrote the proposal with collaboration from Judge Bill Skinner at Hinds County Youth Court, August Patton and Marva Clark from Hinds Behavioral Health Services, Ray Simms and Zach Pattie from the Department of Public Safety, and Annie Gray from MS Families As Allies.

These eight individuals traveled to Washington D.C. in June to develop a plan for:

  • increasing communication among local agencies in Hinds County;
  • maximizing existing funding streams and explore grant opportunities;
  • improving the screening and assessment of youth at the Henley-Young Juvenile Justice Center; and
  • improving follow-through for those youth referred to other agencies/programs.


The first “home” team meeting was held June 13 and included participation from the Department of Human Services, Division of Medicaid, Henley Young Juvenile Justice Center, Hinds County Youth Court, Hinds Behavioral Health Services, MS Families As Allies, Department of Public Safety, DMH’s Division of Children & Youth Services, and DMH’s Bureau of Alcohol & Drug Services.

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