HMHI Expert Spotlight: Deedee Johnson
Meet Deedee Johnson, LCSW, Psychiatric Program Specialist at Huntsman Mental Health Institute (HMHI). Deedee has worked with chronically ill and terminal patients through hospice and palliative care providing therapeutic support to patients and their families. We asked Deedee a few questions about her work at HMHI and what she enjoys doing when she's not working.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do at HMHI.
My name is Deedee Johnson, LCSW - I moved to Utah from North Carolina around 5 years ago. Prior to moving to Utah, I worked for a hospice and palliative care program as their social worker – managing various aspects of a grant and connecting patients and their families to community resources. I received both my Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) and Master of Social Work (MSW) from Appalachian State University – GO MOUNTAINEERS!
At Huntsman Mental Health Institute (HMHI) I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and a Psychiatric Program Specialist for the Comprehensive Assessment and Treatment (CAT) program. The CAT program is a clinical program that serves youth ages 4-17 and is designed to help gain an understanding of a youth’s mental health and behavioral issues. It is designed as a four to six-week program with a multidisciplinary team that works closely together to evaluate the youth, accurately identify their diagnoses, and actively begin treatment.
One of the reasons I love working in the HMHI CAT program is the unique multidisciplinary team approach – each team member brings a different perspective, and the collaborative approach allows us to provide the best possible care for our patients.
"I decided to pursue a career in social work so that I could be that 'one helpful person' for other people."
Deedee Johnson, LCSW
How did you get started in this line of work?
Prior to obtaining my MSW, I was a retail manager for 12 years. My favorite parts of that job were fixing problems and helping my employees navigate their complicated lives. I loved the work, but in 2012 my father had a heart attack. While my father was in the hospital, my mother described the medical social worker as the most helpful provider outside of the surgeon. After that, I decided that I would return to college and pursue a career in social work so that I could be that "one helpful person" for other people.
What do you do for fun when you are not working?
Outside of work I enjoy traveling with my husband and 16 month old son. We are currently planning our next National Park adventure to Yellowstone for spring of 2022. We hope to visit all of the U.S. National Parks before my son’s 18th birthday.