During our twenty years of service in Matagorda County and more recently to include Wharton, MEHOP’s focus has been fulfilling the healthcare needs of the community. We have established a robust Behavioral Health department that offers community residents support through multiple disciplines in the field of mental health and integrated Primary Care for better outcomes. 

Through integrated care, MEHOP has removed the health care silos that often exist between the physical and mental health of individuals and their health care providers. When it comes to the health of our bodies, everything is connected. Physical symptoms affect a person’s mental health, and mental health symptoms increase the risk for physical health-related issues. “In the past providers were limited to their areas of expertise only, limiting how effective they were in addressing all aspects of a patient’s care. Now the team can collaborate and address these factors simultaneously thus increasing the effectiveness of care.” said Dr. John Saglime Jr., Clinical Psychologist.”

The benefits of integrated care are countless – it invites patients to engage in better self-care, decreased trips to the emergency room, decreased hospitalizations and reduced cost of health care due to education and implementation of preventive care. “Integrated care is the most effective form of treatment, allowing a treatment team to address all factors that are contributing to a person’s struggles at the same time” said Saglime.

The need for integrated care is determined on a case by case basis and when appropriate, doctors, nurses, therapists, case managers and other disciplines throughout MEHOP coordinate care as a team using knowledge from each area of expertise. In this environment, patients receive care that is centered around the whole person. “This means that a person receiving integrated treatment will show faster and more sustainable progress” said Saglime.  Each care team member is focused on the health, wellness and preventative care of the patient and provides care without stigma or judgement.

As with all MEHOP clinics, MEHOP Behavioral Health accepts Medicare, Medicaid, employer based/private insurance plans, along with EAP (Employee Assistance Program) and WAP (Military Warrior Assistance Program). As a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) Federally Qualified Health Center we also offer sliding fees based on household income as an option for those who are uninsured or under insured.  Symptoms treated include but are not limited to ADD/ADHD, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, bipolar disorder, trauma/PTSD and grief/loss. Testing services are also available.

Our providers include: Psychiatrists Dr. Rakesh Desai and Dr. Nilesh Patel who provide medication management, Lillian Smith who holds her Doctorate degree in Marriage & Family Therapy and is also a Licensed Professional Counselor, John Saglime, Jr. who holds his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, Blake Benson who is a Licensed Professional Counselor, and Tara Hayes who is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

MEHOP Behavioral Health sees patients beginning at 11 years of age and up, younger patients are on a case by case basis. We have two locations for patient convenience; 1700 Golden Ave. in Bay City and 10141 US 59, Ste. A in Wharton. We are currently looking forward to adding our third location in Palacios soon and expanding partnerships with area school districts and city/county municipalities.

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