The Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) is the state agency that focuses solely on policies, programs, and services for people with severe and persistent mental illness, substance use disorders, and developmental and intellectual disabilities.
Created by the Governor and the General Assembly in 2009, DBHDD began operations on July 1st, 2009. We are responsible for most of the activities that were undertaken by the Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Addictive Diseases, which was part of the former Department of Human Resources.
We have nearly 9,000 employees whose work is structured in three divisions by disability area: Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Addictive Diseases.
DBHDD operates six regional state hospitals and provides and oversees community-based services across the state.
We operate seven regional and state hospitals located in Rome, Atlanta, Milledgeville, Augusta, Columbus, Thomasville, and Savannah. The hospitals offer different services based on the populations they serve and the capacity of community providers. These hospitals provide a spectrum of care from 23-hour observation through residential services.
DBHDD provides and funds a variety of community-based services, including:
- Treatment through providers such as with Community Service Boards;
- Mobile Crisis services for adults as well as children and adolescents;
- Services funded through Medicaid waivers for people with developmental & intellectual disabilities;
- Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) teams that can visit those with persistent mental illness on a daily basis if needed;
- Group homes;
- Crisis Stabilization Programs;
- And many others for all three of the major populations we serve.
The goal of community-based services is to serve people as close to home as possible in the least restrictive setting. Doing so allows them to draw on natural supports, such as family, neighbors, churches, schools, and community activities. It gives them a better chance to maintain the kind of quality of life that all of us want with self-determination and independence.
For more information about the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities, please visit our web site.