The Beckman Center for Mental Health Services Strategic Plan 2020


Service Area and Overview

The Beckman Center for Mental Health Services (BCMHS) opened on January 7, 1963. The Center was first known as the Area Five Mental Health Center. It was first established to serve Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, and McCormick Counties. Saluda County was added in 1964 and Newberry County was added in 1965. In 1966, The Center officially changed its name to the Beckman Center for Mental Health Services in memory of W.P. Beckman, M.D. a pioneer in the state community health movement of the 1930’s through the 1950’s.

BCMHS is one of the sixteen (16) community mental health centers governed by the South Carolina Department of Mental Health. BCMHS includes the largest number of counties, covering the largest land mass, 3708 square miles, and 12% of the state’s 20,060 square miles. The Center is the only community mental health center in South Carolina that is named for an individual rather than a geographic territory.

The population of the seven (7) county area is 257,802. During calendar year 2019, the Center provided services to 5,519 individuals, totaling 58,930 contacts. 

Mission Statement

The Mission of The Beckman Center is to create and maintain quality mental health programs and services that support the recovery of persons with mental illness. South Carolina Counties served include Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, Newberry and Saluda. The Center will work to create a safe, accessible and culturally competent environment which leads to a process driven by individual strengths, needs, abilities and preferences.

Priority is given as follows:

  1. Adults experiencing serious mental illness(+es) and to children, adolescents and families experiencing serious emotional disturbance(s)
  2. Persons in need of screening and, when applicable, crisis intervention services
  3. The general population as resources allow

Vision Statement

To empower people to live healthy and fulfilled lives.

Adult Services

The primary focus of BCMHS is to serve persons with serious mental illness. Brief treatment is provided to the population at large as resources allow.

Services provided to these populations include triage and assessment, crisis intervention, individual, group, and family therapy, Psychosocial Rehabilitative Therapy, and medical services provided by psychiatrists and nurses. The goal of the provision of these services is to assist patients in living independently and to their fullest potential.

Specialized programs such as, Peer Support Services (PSS), treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders, Housing Programs, and services at the Uptown Family Practice in Greenwood, Calhoun Family Practice in Calhoun Falls, and McCormick Family Practice in McCormick offer more of a variety of treatment options. The Center has also extended mental health services to Lakeland’s Rural Health Network, including Clinica Gratis, Transitional Care Clinic, and Peachtree Medical Center. In addition to the expansion of service locations, The Center has also increased its service array to include; Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), and Individual Placement and Support (IPS). In 2019, services expanded to include Intensive Community Treatment (ICT) teams and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy.

The Center’s Housing Programs include Home Share and Rental Assistance. Home Share allows patients to live with a family in the least restrictive environment. Rental Assistance allows patients to live in their own housing of choice with financial assistance for deposits, rent, and other essential items that they might not otherwise be able to afford.

Community Crisis Response Initiative (CCRI) 

In 2019, The Center transitioned its after-hours crisis hotline to the SCDMH Community Crisis Response Initiative (CCRI) Program. The purpose of CCRI is to enhance the SCDMH crisis services array to include a statewide community crisis on-site emergency mental health screening and assessment, as appropriate, twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week, three hundred and sixty-five (365) days a year within sixty (60) minutes of contact with the CCRI team to meet the psychiatric needs of the residents of South Carolina. 

Children, Adolescents, and their Families

CAF services provide an array of services in a variety of settings designed to meet the needs of patients and families. Triage and assessment, crisis intervention, individual, group, and family therapy, and medical services provided by psychiatrists and nurses are the primary focus of services to the CAF population.

CAF Services are provided in an outpatient arena, as well as in school-based and other out-based locations. Currently, BCMHS provides school-based mental health services to over 50 public school setting and continues to expand as opportunities present themselves. In addition, there are positions located Beyond Abuse, Carolina Health Center locations, Saluda and Newberry DJJ, Laurens Emergency Department, and Lakelands Rural health Network.

BCMHS has focused on utilizing evidenced-based practices to serve the CAF population. Several staff have been trained in TC-CBT and Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT). TF-CBT is designed to work with children who have been abused or exposed to a life threatening or traumatic event between the ages of 3 and 18. PCIT is designed to work with parents and caregivers and their children between the ages of 2 ½ and 7 years old who exhibit behavioral issues. In 2019, The Center add the Attachment and Bio behavioral Catchup (ABC) evidenced-based program. ABC helps caregivers provide nurturing care and engage in synchronous interactions with their children. The goal is to assist caregivers in providing a responsive, predictable environment that enhances young children’s behavioral and regulatory capabilities.  The Center anticipates adding a third evidenced-based programs to its service array in 2020, Multi-Dimensional Family Therapy (MDFT). MDFT is a treatment approach designed to work with adolescents, and their caregivers, who present with substance abuse and behavioral problems. 

Clinical High-Risk for Psychosis Grant

BCMHS was awarded a four (4) year SAMHSA grant in September of 2018. The grant focuses on youth and young adults and their families who are 10 to 25 years old. The goals of the program are as follows:

  1. Delay or prevent the onset of psychosis
  2. Minimize the duration of untreated psychosis for those who develop psychotic symptoms
  3. Improve symptomatic and behavioral functioning
  4. Enable youth and young adults to resume age appropriate social, academic, and/or vocational activity.

Medical Services 

BCMHS has a medical staff comprised of two full time adult psychiatrists, one part time and two full time child and adolescent psychiatrists and two (2) Advance Practice Nurses providing services to children and adults. Medical services are provided to patients face to face as well as via telepsychiatry to all locations in the catchment area. The medical staff serve as head of the multidisciplinary team and provide consultation and oversight to clinicians for their cases via treatment team meetings with therapists in all clinic locations. The medical staff meet every other month to discuss center business, perform peer review and meet with nursing to improve medical processes. 


Active Patients by Percentage

Gender -   Male  46%     Female  54% 

Age -   0-17  37%     18-64  58%     65+  5% 

Race -   African American  33%     American Indian  .32%

Asian American  .12%     More Than One Race  1.2% 

Other  4.4%     Spanish American  .07%     Unknown  .60%  

White  59%

BCMHS Staff by Percentage

Gender -   Male  15%     Female  85% 

Race -   African American  32%     Other Minorities  2% 

White  66% 

Business Functions and Performance Improvement

Operations Structure/Information Management

BCMHS has an organizational chart that provides clear lines of supervision and responsibility. The Executive Director reports to the Deputy Director of SCDMH Community Mental Health Services and an advisory Board of Directors who are appointed by the Legislative delegation.

Leadership of BCMHS is achieved by the Executive Director serving as the agency administrative authority. The Executive Staff is chaired by the Center Director and composed of the Director of Administration, Director of Quality Management, and Director of Clinical Services. This body assists with the oversight of the Center’s daily functioning and in proactive planning within the Center.

The Executive Management Team is chaired by the Center Executive Director and is composed of Center-wide program representatives and Clinic Directors. This body functions in accordance with individual job descriptions and as agency decision makers by reviewing, approving, evaluating, recommending, planning, developing and overseeing implementation of programs and services.

The Center Quality Improvement Team (QIT) is composed of the Executive Director, Medical Director, Director of Quality Management, Director of Administration, Director of Clinical Services, Director of Community Support Services, and 2 Clinic/Program Director(s) at-large. This body is responsible for receiving and analyzing data regarding Center operations including effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction. It is also responsible for monitoring of center budget, revenue, forecasting, approval of major expenditures, and manpower allocation. The QIT makes recommendations to the Executive Management Team for adoption and implementation.

Input From Persons Served

BCMHS uses a variety of mechanisms to ensure that our programs and services are in line with the expectations of the persons served, stakeholders, and personnel.

BCMHS values patient input and has developed several ways in which feedback is obtained. Each Clinic has Suggestion Boxes located in their lobby area with Satisfaction Cards for the convenience of patients and guests. BCMHS has a Patient Advisory Board which meets regularly. Members are recruited representative of all areas of service. Patient Satisfaction Surveys are conducted quarterly. Results are collected and analyzed. Following discharge from or transition patients are surveyed, with their permission, about satisfaction and effectiveness of treatment.

Stakeholders provide feedback to the Center through biannual Community Meetings and through a survey that is collected every three years. In addition, there are informal mechanisms to obtain stakeholder feedback.

Personnel have an opportunity to provide feedback through supervisory sessions, review of their position description and annual staff survey.

Financial Planning

BCMHS develops the Center budget along major program lines, which is the procedure used by the S.C. Department of Mental Health and the other fifteen (15) community mental health centers. The Center Executive Director and Director of Administration coordinate the budget process with input from other program managers. The budget includes state appropriations, some county funding, federal block grant funds, revenue generated through the direct provision of services, and contractual revenues.

The projected budget for the Center for Fiscal Year 2020 is $8,658,776. Executive Staff, the Center Management Team, the Quality Improvement Team, the Center Budget Review Team and the Board of Directors review the operating budget monthly. Adjustments are made as required due to changes in revenue, personnel needs, operational expenses, or other funding changes.

Access to Care

To serve the patients in the Beckman catchment area, the Center operates satellite clinics in Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, and Newberry counties. In addition, services are provided in Saluda County on a scheduled basis least monthly through Memorandums of Agreement with Saluda Family Practice, Saluda DJJ, and Saluda DSS. Other intake sites for the Center include all of the collocated locations.

BCMHS utilizes telephone and face-to-face screenings to determine service needs. Routine requests for services are seen within seven (7) working days, urgent requests within two (2) working days, and emergencies are seen on the same day. However, the Center makes every attempt to provide same day access. For FY19, Access to Care was 98%. 

In addition, the Center provides psychiatry services through telemedicine in order to allow more access to medical services for our patients. Each clinic in the Beckman area is set up to allow the medical staff to see patients in another location through telemedicine.

Health and Safety

A goal of the BCMHS is to engage on a daily basis staff, patients and visitors in promoting and maintaining a safe and healthy environment in all of our locations. BCMHS Policies and Procedures are in place to ensure that emergencies are handled in such a way as to protect all persons involved. In the event of an emergency situation or practice drill, staff are trained to assist all patients and visitors in appropriate response. 

BCMHS has a Safety Committee that meets quarterly and has representatives from each location. The purpose of the committee is to review safety inspections of all locations, ensure that health and safety checks are completed quarterly, and ensure that drills and unannounced drills are conducted. 

Cultural Competency

Along with the Statewide Multi-Cultural Council, each SCDMH center, facility and division is required to have a Multi-Cultural Committee. Beckman’s Multi-Cultural Committee is currently comprised of five members appointed by Melanie Gambrell, Center Director. The Committee is comprised of Tacey Perillo (Chair), Betty Colon, Gloria Holmes, Dray Wideman and Deidre Dickerson. The Committee meets at least quarterly. 

The Center is actively moving towards having on-site interpreters available for the Spanish-speaking community. 

Disaster Preparedness 

In accordance with the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare, Beckman’s Disaster Response Team continues to prioritize the continuity of services in the event of event of a natural or man-made disaster via the enactment of its All-Hazards Disaster Preparedness Plan. The team is chaired by the Director of Administration / Center Disaster Coordinator. The purpose of the plan is to provide an effective, organized system to manage the consequences of emergencies and disasters which impact patients, staff, and community residents. The response may include immediate crisis intervention, short term and long-term support for emotional needs, community networking, assessment of the scope of disaster and support for first responders. When needed, BCMHS collaborates with local Emergency Operation Centers, the Upstate Healthcare Coalition, the Midlands Healthcare Coalition, other SCDMH community mental health centers, South Carolina Emergency Management Division, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). 

South Carolina Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative 

The South Carolina Department of Mental Health has collaborated with statewide community-based organizations, state and local agencies, academic institutions and many others to reduce the number of suicides in youth and young adults in South Carolina. The South Carolina Youth Suicide Prevention Initiative is piloting Zero Suicide in several areas of the state. Beckman Center was chosen to be a pilot site in the second round. Zero Suicide is a commitment to suicide prevention. The vision of the initiative is “A South Carolina free of suicide in youth and young adults”. Beckman is proud to be a part of this initiative.

Social Determinants of Health

The Center uses a Five (5) Domain Model to review the Social Determinants of Health: Economic Stability, Education, Health and Healthcare, Neighborhood and Built Environment, and Social and Community Context.  The 2020 Social Determinants of Health are the result of the 2019 Census information and helps to shape Center goals and program implementation.




 In comparison to the State of South Carolina, the Center’s catchment area is very rural with rates of poverty higher than the state average. In addition, educational levels, availability of public transportation, and uninsured persons are of significant concern for the catchment area as it relates to the quality of health of persons served. Through the continued development and expansion of our ICT program, use of the recently purchased RV, and exploration of transportation contracts, the Center hopes to address these area of concerns.

Center Goals for 2020

The Beckman Executive Management Team develops the Center goals annually, with input from staff and other stakeholders. Each year, in January, a Leadership Retreat is held for the development of the goals for the Center. The focus of the 2020 Leadership Retreat was commitment to quality and beyond. Action Items were developed in the following areas during the retreat:

  • Continuing gains achieved in 2019
  • Growing Relationships
  • Nurturing Resiliency
  • Building and Growing from a Strengths Based Approach
  • Enhancing the Harvest with Technology
  • Improving Systems to Promote Growth
  • Planting Seeds for Growth 

In addition the action items/goals were reviewed and there were five (5) priority areas identified. They are as follows:

  1. Changing the Energy- Creating a Culture
  2. Expanding Evidenced-Based Practices
  3. Fostering Provider Resilience
  4. Improving Collaborative Documentation
  5. Exploring More Training Opportunities

The Center goals were endorsed by the Beckman Board of Directors. The action items are reviewed monthly at the Executive Management Team Meeting and reports on progress are made.