Ashtabula Boys Residential Facility

Signature Health Thursday unveiled its new residential facility for boys placed outside their homes by the county Children Services Board, dubbed “Paul’s House.”

The about 5,500-square foot, two-floor building along Park Avenue houses 16 beds (some bedrooms have two), at least four full bathrooms, a full kitchen and cafeteria, interconnected fire alarms and security cameras. A decorative wrought iron fence is planned for the perimeter.

It also features plenty of amenities: televisions in a media room and the great room; a basement exercise room currently with a small basketball arcade, two cycling machines and one treadmill, and table tennis and cornhole setups. A full-sized basketball hoop is planned to go up behind the facility.

Signature Health CEO Jonathan Lee and Tania Burnett, Ashtabula County Children Services Board executive director, both said it was important for the facility to feel less like a box of cold cinder blocks and more like a home.

“We wanted to have something that was going to be rugged and sturdy,” Lee said. “We wanted it to feel like somebody’s house and kind of function that way.”

Burnett added, “No kid should feel like they’re in an institutional setting.”

The Park Avenue facility was the former SR Snodgrass building, and Lee said much of its framework still remains. Accounting office space was easily repurposed into bedrooms with closets or armories added.

He said the top floor’s main area was “gutted,” and two bathrooms moved back to make more space for the great room. Top floor renovations included all new tiling and carpet.

Its pending residential facility license allows the home to house boys ages 8 to 21 — and they can choose to stay after they’ve “aged out” of the county system at 18.

Signature Health already has preliminary site inspection approval, and is awaiting final word from the state Department of Job and Family Services, which should arrive in the next three to four weeks, Lee said.

“We have kids who have had to go out of our county because we haven’t had a place like this,” Burnett said, and the board already has a handful of boys in its custody ready to move in when the facility opens, expected to be later this month.

Paul’s House will be staffed around the clock by 15 to 20

"Signature Health employees," said Brenda Buchanan, Signature Health’s director of child residential services. "It’s not a locked facility, but Lee said care was given to designing it securely, such as open line-of-sight for its staffers."

The basement also has several conference rooms for social workers to meet with residents.

“Typically, when we have kids in group homes, they’ve gone through some sort of trauma,” Burnett said. “They can get their therapy (at the home). If they had a therapist in the county, they can continue with that same therapist because now they’re staying in our county.”

Children services workers can also host group sessions with residents to serve behavioral health needs, and life skills training for boys age 15 and older, who could soon age out of the system and need to become independent.

Burnett said it’s about having a “continuity of care,” as well as helping kids return to their homes sooner.

“Visitation is really difficult when kids are an hour away (at residential facilities outside the county),” she said. “We want them to be able to visit their families, we want our case workers to be able to visit them more often.”

Lee said the board has already asked Signature Health to back a similar residential home for girls. He added it would follow the same model as Paul’s House — not a “giant place where you have tons of kids,” one with a domestic feel.

The home takes its namesake from Paul Brickman, the company’s director of marketing, who has worked to help youth for the last 40 years, Lee said.

Brickman, a former juvenile probation officer in Lake County, was one of the founders of the Glenbeigh drug and alcohol treatment facility in Rock Creek and trained social workers nationwide.

“Some of the teachers and social workers that he trained were the people who got me to treatment,” Lee told those gathered for the ribbon cutting. “In a very real way, I dedicate my 28 years of sobriety to him and his work.”

It was a pleasant surprise for Brickman, a 20-year Signature Health employee, who was joined by his family.

“I am really proud to have my name on this house,” he said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to do this another 20 years. This is going to be a wonderful place.”


Jonathan's Journal 06-05-16

Jonathan's Journal
Signature Health, Inc. Newsletter
In This Issue
Change to Non Profit
Paul's House
Thought For The Week
Join Our List

Join Our Mailing List
Issue: # 4

June 5th, 2016

SH is Officially a Non-Profit !

A new chapter has begun for Signature Health!  You may not have noticed but a fundamental structural change occurred this past week.  We finally completed our most grueling stage of transformation and we are now on file with the Secretary of State as a non-profit organization. 

I know many of our team members have been waiting with anticipation for this change so they can now qualify for student loan forgiveness by working for a non-profit.  The community has been waiting as well.  I had the chance to tell a few key community leaders and we have already received best wishes and congratulations from those that learned that this phase of our transformation is complete. 

Now that we have come out of the cocoon it is time to spread and dry out our wings.  Next we must apply for 501(c)(3) recognition from the IRS. This is the final phase of the transformation.  I really have no idea how long the next phase will take because it is really up to the IRS.  We will have our application submitted within the next six weeks.  I am told the IRS review will likely take six months.  Fortunately, once they grant our 501(c)(3) recognition it should be retroactive to our conversion on June 1st, 2016

Although this has been a long arduous process it was critical to our long term success.  Signature is now positioned to become and FQHC, take advantage of grant opportunities, and we are ready for broader partnerships and affiliations. 
Child Group Home Dedicated to Paul Brickman!

On Thursday, June 2nd, 2016 we held a ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony for our new child group home in Ashtabula.  We dedicated the facility in honor of Paul Brickman for his 40 years of devoted service to helping kids. We named the facility  "Paul's House". Paul's career started as  juvenile probation officer, then a founder of Glenbeigh Hospital.  Later he was a national trainer for educators on substance abuse prevention.  Now of course he is a Founder, Board Member and Director of Marketing for Signature Health.  It is extremely conservative to say that Paul has positively influenced the lives of tens of thousands of kids and I am looking forward to working with Paul for the next 20 years to help even more kids and families.

If you didn't see it there was a really nice article in the Star Beacon on Friday. You can find the article here .
Thought For The Week

Not failure, but low aim, is crime. -J.R. Lowell

Make it a Great Week!  

Go CAVS - We are all in!


Signature Health, Inc., 38882 Mentor Avenue, Willoughby, OH 44094

Wellness Group

Signature Health Clients Only

Walking to a 
Healthy You

Tuesday, June 14
1:30 - 2:45 p.m.
Great Lakes Mall, Mentor

Please meet in front of Sears (inside the mall) at 1:30 pm wearing tennis shoes 
and with a bottle of water. 
We will start walking at 1:45 pm.

Remember to eat a healthy breakfast and lunch before coming!

RSVP by calling Kelly at 440-953-9999   Ext. 145 


Tuesday, June 21
1:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Room 113

A healthy snack will be provided.

No referral needed. Just show up ready to learn and focus on a healthy lifestyle!

Pet Therapy/
Stress Management

Tuesday, June 28
1:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Room 113

If you are allergic to dogs, this may not be the best group for you.

No referral needed. Just show up ready to learn and focus on a healthy lifestyle!

Children Services

 In April, Signature Health in Ashtabula held a luncheon for Ashtabula County Children Services. April is child abuse Prevention Month, and Signature Health recognized those groups and individuals who have gone above and beyond for the children in the county. Take a look at the event here!

Wellness Program

Signature Health in WILLOUGHBY has a new Wellness Program that focuses on wellness education and promotion to help provide holistic care to every client. Mental health and physical health impact each other, so it is important to be aware and make healthy choices to successfully achieve a state of well-being. Individual appointments as well as group educational and support classes are available.

Some topics that are covered are:
- Managing health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma, COPD, and high cholesterol 
- Lifestyle changes such as healthy nutrition on a budget, weight management, physical activity, healthy sleep habits, and stress management
- Smoking cessation
- Increased access to health screenings
- Walking group for fitness
And more!

Same day appointments are available on a first come, first served basis.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact Kelly at 440-953-9999, Ext. 145. Clients can also ask for a referral from another staff member, and they will be contacted.

All Signature Health clients are eligible to participate.

Jonathan's Journal 04-10-16

Jonathan's Journal
Signature Health, Inc. Newsletter
In This Issue
Naming Contest
BH Redesign
Thought For The Week
Join Our List

Join Our Mailing List
Issue: # 3

April 10th, 2016

A Rose By Any Other Name!

We Need Help Now!

Well, the saws have been cutting and the hammers have been pounding away, and we are almost done with remodeling our child group home facility in Ashtabula. There's only one problem... 

So, I am announcing a naming contest with a $500.00 prize!

Please send Brenda your name suggestions 

If we use your name suggestion as the final name, you win the prize! 
You do not need to be a current employee to enter the contest.  We are happy to take entries from all readers of the journal!  There is no limit to the number of entries, but this is like the lottery so if multiple people send the winning suggestion, you gotta split the prize.

Make sure you email your entries so Brenda can keep track of who sent which names. If you tell her verbally etc, that doesn't count.

Entry Deadline is Friday 4-22-16 at 5:00 pm.

Remember this is a group home for adolescent males!  Name suggestions will be vetted by our youth panel in addition to the senior leadership team, so don't bother sending something lame.
 BH Redesign Update-Spend Down Eliminated

This week the local area was rocked with the news that the 160 year old child agency Beechbrook would be eliminating 40% of its workforce in a dramatic restructuring.

I am certain that one of the major considerations they evaluated when making their decision was the BH Redesign work that continues in Columbus.

A few months ago I wrote that the BH Redesign work undertaken by the Ohio Department of Medicaid and the Ohio Department of Mental Health Services is like the switch between ICD-9 and ICD-10 because many of the current billing codes will now have more than one possible replacement code (and associated rate).

In addition to adding many many more codes, the State of Ohio is changing its eligibility system which will eliminate the Medicaid Spend Down Program effective 7-1-16.  Patients who previously accessed Medicaid benefits will now either have to qualify under a new 1915i waiver program or they will be deemed ineligible.  The 1915i waiver is far too complicated to explain in this journal but more information can be found here.

I have been honored to be one of 50 stakeholders asked to provide feedback to the State Department on their change efforts. Although at first it seemed that our advocacy had not yielded much change in the Department's approach, most recently we have seen encouraging signs of progress on both the approach and the proposed reimbursement rates. That said we still have a long way to go.
Thought For The Week

Fear less, hope more, eat less, chew more, whine less, breathe more, talk less, say more, hate less, love more, and good things will be yours. 

-Swedish Proverb

Make it a Great Week !  


Signature Health, Inc., 38882 Mentor Avenue, Willoughby, OH 44094

Ashtabula County Prevention Coalition

Local agencies have worked hard to obtain grants and other sources of funding to provide our communities with a safe way to dispose of their unused medication.
Returning your unwanted medicines to a take-back program is the safest and most environmentally protective way to dispose of unused medication.

4817 State Rd. Suite 203
Ashtabula, Oh 44004
Phone: (440)992-3121
Fax: (440)992-2761

This Brochure was developed, in part, under
Grant # SPO 20528 from the Office of Nation Drug Control Policy and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The views, opinions, and content of this publication are those of the authors and contributors, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions and policies of ONDCP, SAMHSA, or HHS, and should not be construed as such.

Fact:  Throwing medicines in the garbage is not safe - especially for narcotics and other highly addictive and dangerous drugs - because the drugs can be found and used by others, even if they are mixed with undesirable materials like coffee grounds or kitty litter. Prescription drug abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem in the county. Prevent drug theft and abuse by using a medicine take-back program to dispose of your unwanted medicines.  
Fact:  Crushing pills to disguise them before disposal is difficult and dangerous and puts the handler at risk of exposure to the drug through skin contact or by breathing in the dust.  Many medications are designed to release in the body over time, and crushing pills can release a dangerously high dose. The pill dust may endanger other family members and pets in the home, and some medications can be especially harmful to children and women of childbearing age.
Fact:  Throwing unwanted medicines in the household trash does not ensure that curious kids can’t get at them. There’s an epidemic of accidental poisonings from medicines in our homes - and children are the most common victims. Also, pets and animals are not deterred by kitty litter or other substances when getting into the trash and can potentially ingest the unused medicines.  Human medications are the leading cause of pet poisonings, most often from trash-related toxic exposures.
Fact:  Modern landfills are well-designed, safe, and handle standard household waste well.  However, medicines are a special type of hazardous chemical that we need to keep out of our solid waste system and landfills to prevent harm to people and the environment.  Drugs can be very toxic for people and wildlife, even in low doses.

Items placed in the Drop-Boxes should have their labels removed or blackened out with permanent marker.
Medications should be placed inside a closed container or baggie, (preferably the original container) and then placed inside the drop-box.

Andover Village Hall
134 Maple Street
Andover, Oh 44003
Open Monday- Friday 8am-4:30pm
(drop box is located inside)
Ashtabula City Police Department
110 W. 44th St. #1
Ashtabula, Oh 44004
OPEN 24/7
(drop box is located inside)
Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Office
25 West Jefferson Street
Jefferson, Oh 44047
Open Monday-Friday 8am-4:30pm
(drop box is located inside)
Conneaut Police Department
294 Main Street
Conneaut, Oh 44030
OPEN 24/7
(drop box is located inside)
Northwest Ambulance District
1480 South Broadway
Geneva, Oh 44041
OPEN 24/7
(drop box is located outside)
Orwell Village Hall
179 W. Main St.
Orwell, Oh 44076
OPEN Tuesdays & Thursdays from 9am-3pm
(drop box is located inside)

Medication Safety

As we age and have more medical needs it is common to find ourselves easily overwhelmed with past and present medications. Here are some steps we can take to make it safer and less confusing.

- Keep all the current medications in the same place and out of children's/ pet’s reach. Remove the discontinued medications, as soon as possible, this way you won't keep taking something you no longer need.
- It might be helpful to use a shoe box or plastic container to keep the bottles together and easier to move around.
- Don't keep medications in bathroom cabinets, this is most likely the only place in your house where visitors can go, be by themselves, with a closed door! 
- If you fill weekly pill boxes, do it over a baking sheet or something else that has a rim because it will help prevent the pills from rolling on the floor.
- Sometimes when we get into a routine it may happen that we do things out of habit. At some point we may wonder if we took a medication or not. Make a calendar part of your routine - put a check mark on the day as soon as you took your medications, if you take medications three times a day you will have three check marks.
-Discard old medications by taking them to the police station or sheriff’s department collection boxes- see attached list
- Remove your name from the pill bottles before you discard them. Some pharmacies like our Signature Health Pharmacy have medication collection containers for customer use. 
- If you are diabetic and you use syringes you can dispose of them in an empty, plastic laundry detergent container. Make sure you close the lid. If collected this way the used needles can be thrown in the garbage. 
- Take a medication list or the medication bottles with you to all doctors’ appointments. 
- Use one pharmacy as much as possible.
- Communicate, if you have any questions about your medications, what they are for, side effects, what to do and not to do.  Reach out to your pharmacist or doctor's office. 
- Call for refills about 7 days before you run out of medications. This will give some time for the communication between your doctor- pharmacy the insurance company and you.

Written by Mihaela Burtea

Ashtabula Pharmacy

Pharmacy Hours 
Monday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Tuesday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Wednesday:      8:30am - 8:00pm
Thursday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Friday: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Closed Saturday and Sunday

Phone: 440-261-9200
Fax: 440-261-9201 

Garfield Pharmacy

Pharmacy Hours 
Monday: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Tuesday: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Wednesday:      8:30am - 6:30pm
Thursday: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Friday: 8:30am - 4:00pm
Closed Saturday and Sunday

Phone: 216-395-1060 ext 156
Fax: 216-395-1050 

Willoughby Pharmacy

Pharmacy Hours 
Monday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Tuesday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Wednesday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Thursday: 8:30am - 8:00pm
Friday: 8:30am - 5:00pm
Closed Saturday and Sunday

Phone: 440.954.3333 - 866.953.7300
Fax: 440.954.9501