Above all else, Blue Ridge Health wishes to illuminate and eradicate barriers to quality healthcare for people in Western North Carolina. In October 2021, Blue Ridge Health took another step toward fulfilling their mission by integrating Meridian Behavioral Health Services, strengthening the continuum of care for both organizations.
As a subsidiary non-profit under the governance of a combined Board of Directors, Meridian boosts the capacity of BRH to provide excellent behavioral healthcare across a wider area of WNC, while BRH medical and dental services brings seamless, well-rounded care to a broader range of people.
According to Dr. Don Buckner of Meridian, “One of the statistics that haunts us in behavioral health is the fact that folks with persistent Severe Mental Illnesses have reduced life expectancies.” It is imperative that patients with Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, or other complex mental health diagnoses find consistent healthcare to ensure their overall health. For Dr. Buckner and the rest of Meridian, accessibility to both behavioral and primary healthcare is key to solving this issue. If there is any way we can deconstruct obstacles to primary care for our patients, that’s our goal.
Blue Ridge Health has truly found a partner in Meridian. We share values, serve similar populations, and hold the same vision for care in WNC. Dr. Buckner and Dr. Richard Hudspeth, CEO of Blue Ridge Health, both believe integration is an effective strategy for creating a permanent solution to healthcare inequalities across WNC.