Focused on helping victims of addiction and dependency win their battles one day at a time, a program provided by Plateau Mental Health in Cookeville is giving its clients the chance of a lifetime and an opportunity to turnover a new leaf.

   Adopting the name of its mission, Plateau’s New Leaf program views recovery as a process that may require several different levels of care but at the end “there is a light in the tunnel that signals there is an opportunity ahead for a client or patient to get their lives back on track and turnover a new leaf,” said Kimberly Sowell, vice president of Addiction and Co-occurring Services for Volunteer Behavioral Health, the nonprofit parent of Plateau Mental Health.

New Leaf, according to Sowell, is dedicated to helping all of those who are captured by addiction and dependency issues.

The program, she said, accepts a broad listing of insurance coverages, including TennCare, and is accessible to all 31 VBH served counties. 

“This is a healthcare issue that frankly knows no boundaries,” Sowell said. “Its victims include young and old, the wealthy and not so wealthy, those who live in the city and those who live in some of the state’s most rural crossroad communities, and all others.

“What we’re doing in Cookeville at Plateau Mental Health through New Leaf is providing a regiment of treatment that can be most effective when the person with whom we’re working is motivated and wanting a change in his or her life, but our program can also be effective for those where treatment is not so welcoming and is mandated.” 

New Leaf Recovery Center, a licensed facility with 17 detox beds and 23 residential beds, is available and accessible to the 31 counties in Middle, Upper Cumberland and Southeast Tennessee served by Volunteer Behavioral Health.

Services provided by New Leaf include medically monitored crisis detox, medical detox, social detox, residential treatment, and comprehensive discharge planning.

Sowell offered that among the strengths of the New Leaf program is the expansive list of activities for those enrolled that includes groups addressing addictions and co-occurring disorders, mental health issues, daily living skills, educational groups, individual counseling, family support groups, recreational activities, self-help groups, and other therapies such as art and music.

While in medical detoxication, the client will participate in all scheduled group counseling sessions and/or group activities.

The medical detoxication treatment program is a medically monitored intensive service. The staff physician evaluates each client on the day of admission and as needed per individual. The evaluation includes a physical examination of each client as well as management of withdrawal symptoms.

The program incorporates information and treatment regimens specific to co-occurring disorders. This includes the incorporation of Double Trouble in Recovery and co-occurring disorders groups.

Those dealing with an addiction or dependency issue, or who have a friend or relative who is, may call Volunteer Behavioral Health at 1-877-567-6051 or visit for more information about recovery, substance abuse, mental illness or related topics.