SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The Link in central Sioux Falls helps connect people with resources for substance abuse or mental health care. Nurse manager Madeline Miller feels fortunate to in her role there.
“For me, it’s overwhelming in that I feel it’s an incredible privilege,” Miller said.
Miller says The Link has had more than 1,700 visits from June 1 to November 15.
“We have had 1,775 visits,” Miller said. “That means that we’ve had that many encounters where someone has come to us and done what we call a triage assessment, so that’s a situation where a patient takes part in a conversation with a staff member so that we can identify their needs and help direct them to the next best step for care.”
She says that among those 1,775 are 763 different people. Executive director Bill Earley looked ahead to the end of this year.
“Some of the numbers I think are pretty staggering,” Earley said. “We’re going to be coming up by the end of December, so by the end of this calendar year, we will have triaged approximately 2,000 different experiences. People that have come in, have had a need, that will translate to something probably just short of a thousand separate individuals throughout that time, since we’ve been open on June 1st.”
One type of visit, in particular, has gone well past 1,000.
“Our biggest program really is our sobering program,” Miller said. “We’ve had over 12-hundred visits for individuals that just need a short-term observation because they’re intoxicated, and usually they’re only with us about six to eight hours. Some of those individuals come to us from the community, and as the temperatures begin to drop we know that they will be even more in need of a safe place to be monitored.”