Delaware goes digital with 24/7 mental health and addiction referrals - Delaware


Oct. 9, 2018 9:16 am

Delaware goes digital with 24/7 mental health and addiction referrals

The online referral system is much faster than older methods that can delay help when it's needed most.

(Photo by Pexels user Lukas Rychvalsky, used under a Creative Commons license)

Help is here, Delaware. If you can remember that phrase, you can access all kinds of treatment resources any time of the day or night, via

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Earlier this month, the State of Delaware launched an online referral system for people struggling with mental health and addiction disorders as part of its newly-minted START (Substance Use Treatment and Recovery Transformation) initiative.

The Department of Health and Social Services’ Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) is partnering with OpenBeds, the Washington, D.C.-based healthcare technology platform, to create the Delaware Treatment and Referral Network (DTRN).

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“Real-time online treatment referrals and acceptances are an important step forward in making our behavioral health system more responsive for the people we serve,” said DHSS Secretary Dr. Kara Odom Walker, who is also a board-certified family physician. “Because of the Delaware Treatment and Referral Network, health care providers, in consultation with individuals and their families, won’t have to spend hours on the phone trying to find out if a treatment slot of bed is available. Faxed paperwork won’t get misplaced. And a bed won’t be given away to someone else while an individual seeking treatment tried to get to a treatment location.”


Most healthcare providers in Delaware participate in the 24/7 referral program, including (but not limited to) ChristianaCare, Bayhealth, St. Francis, Beebe and Westside Family Healthcare.

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