Right Track Medical Group welcomes director of outreach
New director brings experience to streamline the referral process
Right Track Medical Group is welcoming a new team member whose role will focus on helping patients and referral partners access care at its outpatient mental health clinics.
Carol Ann Hughes joined the staff in January from Parkwood Behavioral Health System, where she worked for the past seven years. She worked with providers throughout 16 counties in Northeast Mississippi to address acute psychiatric needs of patients. The challenges of patients stepping down from acute to outpatient care was a frequent concern, she said.
“I saw a great need for better access to care on the outpatient side,” Hughes said. “It was often a struggle for people to get therapy and medication management after they left acute care, and do it in a convenient manner. It was hard for the patient and their family.”
At Right Track Medical Group, Hughes will work with physicians and other providers to make sure patient needs are swiftly met and to streamline the referral process so that people can get swift access to care. Right Track provides everything from psychiatric evaluation and medication management to individual and family therapy and coping skills groups.
“Right Track Medical Group provides the best option for outcomes you can have in an outpatient setting, because you can have everything under one roof,” Hughes said. “Patients can come to one place and have everything taken care of, so it’s not so much of an interruption in their life.”
Hughes’s role will include educating physicians, nurses and other staff on what services are available at Right Track Medical Group. She will also be working with acute-care facilities to provide patients with the best transition into an outpatient setting. She will also serve as a resource for businesses in the area, as mental-health needs often affect employee wellbeing and productivity.
With her experience in acute behavioral healthcare, Hughes has seen firsthand the seriousness of mental illness and the impact it has, not only on an individual’s life but also on the lives of those around them.
“I believe every single life is important and valuable,” she said. “Part of my passion for what I do is knowing that, each and every day, I have the chance to help someone make his or her life better.”
A native of Ripley, Miss., Hughes holds a business degree from Mississippi State University and has spent her entire career in North Mississippi. She said her hope is to see the stigma of mental healthcare erased from the communities she serves.
“As we move forward, we want people to think of seeking help for mental-health needs as being just as common as going to the doctor to manage your diabetes,” Hughes said. “Removing the stigma around mental health will lead to people having more access to care, and help more people live happy lives.”
To request an in-service education session by Hughes, contact her at 662-255-0265 or firstname.lastname@example.org.