Outpatient Programming includes extended outpatient
and continuing care substance abuse treatment services for chemically
dependent women. Extended outpatient programming is directed towards:
- Women residing in the community who are in need of support to establish
and maintain their recovery and are wanting to avoid the need for
a higher level of care
- Women who are on the House of Mercy halfway
house waiting list and require services for support until they
can be admitted to halfway house programming
- Current House
of Mercy clients who are in need of additional treatment services
and/or support as they transition to independent living
care groups comprised of House of Mercy halfway house or extended outpatient
alumni or referrals from within the community. These groups (offered
in the evenings) provide a group therapy format that women can
utilize for support as they face the daily challenges of reinforcing
recovery, parenting and overall living skills on their own. Group
sessions are facilitated by staff who are available to clients
for individual therapy as well as for overall case management.
Clients are encouraged to commit to this group for at least one
year, secondary to discharge, yet can continue to attend indefinitely. Research indicates that provision of these types of ongoing therapeutic
supports is vital in reinforcing positive outcomes.
clients may utilize the John R. Grubb/House of Mercy Child Development
Center for child-care during treatment programming. They may also
be eligible to receive assistance with transportation. Clients
participating in outpatient programming have access to a flexible
menu/schedule of individual and group counseling services, chemical
dependency related educational offerings, parenting classes and
self-sufficiency activities—including education and employment assistance.
Diocesan School Program
The Diocesan School Program is a collaborative initiative
between House of Mercy and four Catholic Diocesan elementary schools.
A full-time nurse and social worker visit each of the sites on
a weekly basis to provide medical and psychosocial support. Through
the ministry of this project, they actively address students’ emotional,
spiritual and physical needs through assessment, diagnosis and
planning, intervention, evaluation, interdisciplinary collaboration
The social worker facilitates regular skill-development
classes, provides counseling and initiates interventions in such
areas as substance abuse, sex education and self-esteem building.
The social worker also assists families in obtaining medical insurance
or services for their children through federal and state programs,
as well as uninsured and under-insured medical clinic patients
in obtaining free or reduced medication whenever possible.
nurse provides numerous health care services for diocesan school
students, families and staff. In addition to completing student
care plans and providing acute care services, students are educated
on various health-related topics, including but not limited to,
heart health, the effects of tobacco, oral health and first aid.
The nurse also meets with the parents of students with special
health needs to develop school plans, provides health services
to staff/faculty, develops wellness programming and coordinates
educational programming on subjects such as CPR, medication distribution and
Homeless Outreach Program
The Homeless Outreach Program is a collaborative
partnership between House of Mercy and Primary Health Inc. The program provides outpatient chemical dependency services
to homeless persons in the Polk county area. House of Mercy staff
go to Des Moines-area men’s and women’s shelters to
provide a range of services including, but not limited to, psychosocial
assessment/treatment, crisis intervention assistance, brief counseling,
individual and group counseling, information and referral assistance,
financial/resource management help and case management. All House
of Mercy staff services and interventions are conducted to assist
clients in moving towards self-sufficiency via treatment, transitional
housing and/or permanent housing.
The Dental Program is a voluntary initiative involving
House of Mercy and several area dentists, hygienists and dental
assistants. The program was established to provide dental care
to women living at House of Mercy. Although many House of Mercy
clients are covered under Title XIX (which has a dental benefit),
dental care is extremely difficult for clients to access. The House
of Mercy dental program links local volunteer dentists with House
of Mercy clients. The clients are initially screened and then referred
to participating dentists to be seen for complex restorative
work, as needed. Upon completion of the restorative services, the clients
are referred back to the House of Mercy dental clinic for ongoing
care and prevention services.
In addition to providing much needed
assistance to adult clients, the program helps to breakdown some
of the barriers between dentists and Title XIX beneficiaries. It
is also hoped that the program reinforces the importance of good
oral hygiene so mothers ensure that their children receive the dental care they require.
St. Jude Hospital Pregnancy Prevention Program
The St. Jude Hospital Pregnancy Prevention Program is
a pregnancy prevention initiative based at St. Jude Hospital in
Vieux Fort, St. Lucia, West Indies, and primarily serves the residents
of the island’s southern communities. St. Lucia is a small
island in the eastern Caribbean with a population of approximately
160,000. One of the leading social and public health problems facing
the culture is an epidemic of teenage pregnancy.
The program has
two main components. The first involves school based educational
programming for adolescents and young adults that focuses on personal
growth, increased self-esteem, decision-making, goal setting and
information on anatomy, reproduction, pregnancy, parenting, child
development, relationships and communication skill development.
Participants are encouraged to consider all available options when
making decisions that may impact their future.
The second area
of emphasis is a hospital-based program offering individual counseling
services and employment skills training, as well as educational
programming offered through the schools. Presentations are also
made to parents and community groups on an as needed basis.
Student Internships and Educational Programming
House of Mercy offers student internships and educational programming to students, employees and the general public.
House of Mercy supports training and internship programs for students as part
of its mission and purpose. Students are provided a variety of “real
life” experiences as they work on their degrees, from associate
of arts to graduate level. A number of medical professionals (medical,
nursing, pharmacy, podiatry and physician assistant students)
also participate in programming in order to gain valuable
experience in working with diverse groups of acutely ill patients.
House of Mercy offers an extensive menu of educational programs for employees
as a means to enhance their existing skills or support their development
of additional skill sets. A major focus of in-house education is
the building and maintenance of cutting edge, state-of-the-art
clinical skills to implement and reinforce research-based programming.
House of Mercy personnel regularly provide educational programs to community
groups and organizations on topics related to the various programs
and services offered by the facility. Staff frequently guest lecture
at area colleges and universities as a part of the facility’s
commitment to community education and outreach.