Spencer, Hablitzel and Marett honored as pioneers in mental health


From left to right: Brett Spencer, Danielle Poe, Dr Chris Marett, Dr William Hablitzel and Dr John Henning. (Photo by Ashley McCarty)

By Ashley McCarty

Defender of the People

The courthouse buzzed with impatience on Friday, October 8, as friends and family eagerly awaited the celebration of Judge Brett Spencer, Dr William Hablitzel and Dr Chris Marett.

As of October 7, the first anniversary of these individuals began their collective journey to provide mental health services to the Adams County community.

Shortly after 2 p.m., these aforementioned pioneers were surprised in the common plea courtroom as guests began to pour in for the celebration.

“Technically, this is the first anniversary of our first session in this mental health care program. The very first meeting that sparked this idea was on April 14, 2020. On October 7, we already had sessions going. Here we are at the first anniversary. I could get emotional. Our adult and youth programs are wonderful, ”said Danielle Poe, rising to address the honored attendees.

In the year the adult program was operational, 388 adult sessions were held. 200 of them said they had never had access to this level of mental health care.

This arose out of a Zoom meeting in December, when Judge Spencer said, ‘Now the kids.’ They now have the same access to mental health care, which began three and a half weeks ago. , through schools and the juvenile justice system, we have received 52 referrals and 36 critical children have already had their first session, follow-ups and treatment plans in place, ”said Poe.

With great enthusiasm, Poe reported that the youth program’s psychiatrists and psychologists had already asked if they could add more hours.

“They already see the need and have already fallen in love with this program and our community. So, because it’s the first anniversary, we thought it was necessary to recognize three of our main stakeholders. This could not have happened without Dr Hablitzel, Judge Spencer and Dr Marett. You have stepped up your efforts, so we want to say hello to all three of you today. We thought about how we might recognize such special people. How to say thank you with a gift when nothing is ever enough? said Poe.

The gift prepared for Spencer was a canvas from the courthouse, a photo taken by local photographer Michael J. Gossett.

“We wanted to give you something to hold onto, something that represents your work, your life and your community,” she said.

Dr Marett, who had expressed an affinity for Murphin Ridge Inn, was offered a two night stay at this warm country inn.

“Thank you for the collaboration. It has been wonderful for us. We are learning just as much about serving the people here and doing our best to meet their mental health needs. We appreciate the support, ”said Marett.

Dr. Hablitzel was offered a two-night stay in pet-friendly accommodations at Shawnee State Park. Dr Chris Henning, also present and instrumental in the process, received a bag filled with a menagerie of coupons from local restaurants.

“Dr. Henning, we can’t forget you. When we talk about boots in the field, you serve these hundreds of patients we just spoke about. You were alongside Dr. Marett serving these patients, working with them. , diagnosing them, making plans to change their lives. We can’t say thank you enough. We can’t say thank you enough for the change and the movement in the community, “said Poe.

As guests filter to make room for scheduled events, Spencer, Marett, Henning and Poe paused to comment on the day’s festivities.

“Seeing Judge Spencer, Dr Hablitzel, Danielle, everyone I have met through this engagement and have worked with to provide services here in Adams County – it has been a joyous day. for me. The most important thing I was thrilled to hear was the number of people we served. The clinic seemed busy, but hearing that we have helped people through 388 sessions, 200 of those people who have never had mental health care at this level, really helps achieve the goal of what we want to do. in the clinic, ”Marett said.

Spencer, who expressed a lot of surprise, admitted he felt like the celebration was for Marett.

“He took an embryonic program and developed it. He surrounded us with excellent doctors. We were all excited. I, along with Dr Merett, were shocked at the numbers. We have been working on this for 366 days and 388 sessions have taken place – 200 patients report never having had access to this level of mental health care. In December, we were all in Zoom meeting, and we raised the issue of teens. So, I believe Dr. Henning planted the seed, and now we have a teen program. We cover all of these things, and it was a necessity. It is a real treatment. A profit margin has never been discussed. It’s just help; independent and professional help, ”Spencer said.

Henning, likewise, simply accompanied Marett under the guise of a celebration for Spencer.

“I came because I heard they wanted us to be here for Judge Spencer, and I thought I would give Dr. Marett some company. I was surprised that we were also honored, really because I think just being part of all of this is an honor in itself. I was blown away by the support and appreciation from everyone for what I would just consider doing my job. It has been awesome and rewarding in a way that I could not have anticipated, ”said Henning.

A touching and inspiring word from Poe was said in conclusion.

“There are so many things I could say. I feel so full to be sitting in this room with these people. It was crucial that they knew how appreciated and important they were, because when movements like this are created, the people behind them are sometimes left in the background. I want the community to know and see the strong individuals who lead it; people in our community and outside who care so much about the people here. They didn’t ask for any glory, but we wanted to give it to them today. We wanted to honor them. Adams County is blessed to have them, ”said Poe.

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