South Carolina Department of Mental Health
2414 Bull Street, Columbia, SC 29202
News Release


March 19, 2010
Contact:   DMH Office of Public Affairs
                  Phone: (803) 898-8581


Department of Mental Health Centers Receive Re-accreditations

Columbia, SC - The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) has re-accredited both the Coastal Empire Community Mental Health Center (CECMHC) and the Tri-County Mental Health Center (Tri-County) for a period of three years.  Operated by the South Carolina Department of Mental Health, both CECMHC and Tri-County are components of the Agency’s Community Mental Health Services division.

"We are very proud of our staff, whose work in serving mentally ill adults and emotionally disturbed youth, in a caring and professional manner, was recognized by our CARF surveyors and has resulted in our re-accreditation," said CECMHC Executive Director Ray Norris.  The CECMHC provides services to adults, children, and families affected by serious mental illnesses and significant emotional disorders in Beaufort, Allendale, Colleton, Hampton, and Jasper counties.  In fiscal year 2009, the Center served 6,902 patients, 2,384 of whom were children and 255 of whom were over the age of 65. 

Tri-County provides coordinated outpatient services to adults and children with severe and persistent mental illness in Chesterfield, Marlboro, and Dillon counties.  The Center served 3,760 people in fiscal year 2009, comprising 1,281 children and 104 patients over the age of 65.  “The staff and clients of Tri-County are proud to achieve a three-year CARF accreditation,” said Interim Director Murry Chesson.  “We are especially pleased with a commendation recognizing the Center’s positive relationships with local communities.” 

CARF International, an independent, nonprofit accreditor of human service providers, credentials more than 5,900 providers in over 19,000 locations; CARF-accredited providers serve more than 8.3 million people of all ages each year.

The South Carolina Department of Mental Health serves approximately 102,000 citizens with mental illnesses, including 33,000 children and adolescents.  The Department provides outpatient services through a network of seventeen community mental health centers and numerous clinics.  It also operates four psychiatric hospitals, one community nursing care center, and three veterans’ nursing homes.

Coastal Empire Community Mental Health Center –
Tri County Mental Health Center –
CARF International –
SC Department of Mental Health –