About Access

Access, Screening, Triage and Referral to health services are critical functions in the Cardinal Innovations Health Plan established between the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, the Division of Medical Assistance, the Division of Mental Health and Cardinal Innovations Healthcare Solutions.  This management of access to care function is assigned to the Cardinal Innovations Healthcare Solutions Clinical Operations Department’s Access Unit.

This unit is responsible for timely response to the needs of consumers and quick linkages to qualified providers of the network. Contact the Call Center for:

  • Telephone assessments and enrollment of individuals for mental health, intellectual and other developmental disabilities and substance use/addiction services;
  • Information on community resources for mental health, intellectual and other developmental disabilities and substance use/addiction;
  • Crisis intervention by telephone or to arrange for an emergency face to face clinical assessment related to a crisis; and
  • Referral for services to Cardinal Innovations Healthcare Solutions’s local network of providers.


The first step for individuals seeking assistance with mental health, substance use/addiction, and intellectual/other developmental disabilities treatments is to call the Access Call Center and speak with one of our behavioral healthcare professionals to make an appointment for an evaluation and intake.

All counties:
TTY: Dial 711 or 1-800-735-2962

After Hours Management
The Access Unit conducts telephonic assessments and crisis intervention for other behavioral healthcare programs in North Carolina. (These are local management entities associated with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services’ system.) To date, the Access Unit’s clinicians and coordinators answer calls for 39 counties during after business hours, holidays and weekends.

Call Center Staff

  • Access Manager – Licensed Professional
  • Call Center Supervisor – Qualified Professional
  • Access Clinicians – Licensed Professionals
    •  authorize services, answer 800 line, and manage crisis calls
  • Access Coordinators – Qualified Professionals
    • answer 800 line and refer for services, provide information on MH/DD/SA issues, track referrals and hospital discharges
  • Qualified Developmental Disability Professional for specific intellectual/developmental disability questions and referrals
  • Primary Care Liaison who works with the CCNC network