Oaklawn provides a full range of mental health and addiction services for children, adolescents and adults in Elkhart and St. Joseph counties. Our services include skills training and case management, individual and group therapy, psychiatric services, intensive residential programs for youth and inpatient treatment for adults.
If you or a loved one are in need of mental health or addiction services, you’ve come to the right place. Oaklawn’s Access Center exists to help anyone in our community connect with the services they need – whether that’s here or somewhere else.
To contact our Access Center, call one of the numbers below and ask to speak to an Access Center specialist in the city where you’d like to receive services (Elkhart, Goshen or South Bend):
- Elkhart County: 574-533-1234
- St. Joseph County: 574-283-1234
We speak English and Spanish and have access to interpreters for other languages. Regular hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, but the center takes emergency requests after hours.
If you believe the person you’re calling about is a danger to themselves or others, call 911 or take them to your local emergency room if it is safe to do so.
Active clients wishing to schedule an appointment should call one of the numbers above and ask for their provider.
If this will be your first time calling our Access Center, we encourage you to read on for helpful information!
Who should contact Oaklawn’s Access Center?
- Anyone wanting information about mental health resources in the community or Oaklawn services
- Individuals seeking treatment for themselves or a minor child
- Community agencies wishing to refer an individual for services
- Friends and family members of adults in need of services. Please note that we will need to speak to the individual to ensure they are willing to receive services before scheduling a new appointment, but we do encourage you to help facilitate treatment. Being present with your friend or family member when they make the call, or even placing the first call for them, can be a tremendous support for someone experiencing a mental health issue.
What happens once I contact the Access Center?
First, tell the receptionist where you’d like to receive services: Goshen, Elkhart or South Bend. Depending on your location, and to best serve your needs, you may be transferred to another specialist more knowledgeable with services in that area. Due to high call volumes, and because we take time with each caller to determine their need and options, you may experience a brief wait time.
The Access Center specialist will ask you questions about the symptoms or concerns you have, your medical history, your living situation (or other questions about your support network), insurance or financial information, etc.
The Access Center specialist will triage your level of need and help determine what services are right for you. That may include referring you to another community agency, recommending you contact your employer or insurance company to learn about their options or scheduling an appointment with Oaklawn.
If you are scheduled for an appointment with Oaklawn, your first meeting will be with a master’s level therapist who will perform an initial assessment and connect you with the appropriate Oaklawn services. Services may include skills training; care facilitation; group, individual or family therapy and/or medication management.
Can I schedule an appointment with a psychiatrist?
Not for your first appointment. At Oaklawn, we know a multi-dimensional approach to treatment is the best path to success. That’s why your first appointment is a personal initial assessment with a therapist, who will help determine what services will be most helpful. That may include seeing a psychiatrist, but will also likely include other services such as skills training, care facilitation or therapy. Each client is encouraged to give input and to actively participate in the direction of their treatment.
In addition to Oaklawn, is there other help I should seek?
If you (or your child) are experiencing a mental health problem or concern, we recommend you see your primary care physician to rule out any physical health issues. Your physician may order some routine tests, such as lab work, and depending on your concern, may prescribe medication.
If you are employed, we encourage you to contact your employer’s HR office and ask if your company has an employee assistance program. Many employers offer programs that provide mental health services, such as a limited number of free counseling sessions, to any member of an employee’s immediate family.
If you have insurance, we also encourage you to contact your insurance company and ask about your mental health treatment benefits and providers in your network. Your insurance company can provide a list of treatment providers who participate with your plan and you can then contact them directly. You are always welcome to call Oaklawn’s Access Center for help.
Continue to develop your network of support, such as friends, family, church or other community organizations.
Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, eating healthfully and exercising. If you’re having trouble eating or sleeping, these are also areas where your primary care physician could be of help.
What if I don’t have insurance?
Your ability to pay does not affect your ability to receive services at Oaklawn. Our Access Center specialists will work with you, and Oaklawn may even be able to help you apply for coverage, if eligible.
What are the best times to call the Access Center?
Normal office hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, but our Access Center hotline is available after hours for emergencies and urgent concerns. Due to high call volumes, and because we take time with each caller to help determine their need and options, you may experience a brief wait time. Tuesdays and Fridays tend to have a lighter call volume.
Can I visit the Access Center in person?
Yes. Our Access Centers at the Oaklawn campuses in South Bend, Elkhart and Goshen are available for walk-in inquiries from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. This is an opportunity to ask questions and learn more about Oaklawn services. If services are needed, an initial appointment will be scheduled for a future date.
What if my loved one refuses services?
Unless your loved one is a danger to themselves or others, they cannot legally be compelled to receive services. We understand how frustrating this can be for friends and family members. Contacting your local NAMI chapter (National Alliance on Mental Illness) is often a good resource for friends and family to learn more information about their loved one’s mental illness, as well as maintaining your own mental health and your relationship with them.