Our daily news is full of reports about the epidemic of addiction across the country and our area is high on the list in many cases. I have recently met Dr. Chambless Johnston III and he is working to do something about it through his clinic in Johnson City. If you or your family have been affected by addiction or you just want to be more informed, this gentleman is a “Mountain Mover” you need to know.
BRIAN: Dr. Johnston, first of all thank you for taking time to talk with me so folks can learn more about you. Let’s start at the beginning. Where did you grow up and what was life like for you as a kid?
Dr Johnston: I was born in Nashville, TN and moved to Knoxville when I was 4 years old. I grew-up on Norris lake at my grandfather’s cabin fishing, hunting & spending my time outdoors. I spent my Saturdays playing sports and cheering on my UT Vols.
BRIAN: With your profession, you can set up shop anywhere in the country that you want. What is it about this area and the people here that keep you in this region?
Dr Johnston: While in medical school I lived in the Caribbean, Los Angeles & New York. During that time, I learned a lot about myself. Even though I enjoyed my time in these places the Tennessee mountains always called me home. With my passion for the outdoors what better geographic location that Johnson City. I completed my Internal Medicine Residency at ETSU. While working hard as a resident I knew Johnson City, Tennessee needed me the most. At the end of the day I believe I can change and save more lives in this community.
BRIAN: Any conversation about this region has to include family. How important are family and family values to you and why?
Dr Johnston: My family is very important to me. Family values are the root of why I am in this profession.
BRIAN: Another staple of daily life in this region is religion, it is a part of the cultural tradition. How does religion influence your daily routine?
Dr Johnston: As a Christian physician it is not what my purpose is for life but what purpose God has for me.
BRIAN: Finally, and perhaps most importantly, let’s talk about your work with East Tennessee Recovery. Folks might know you as Restoration and Wellness in Johnson City. What is it that you do, why is it important to this region and how can we learn more?
Dr Johnston: East Tennessee Recovery is a medical facility licensed by the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse specializing in Addiction Medicine & Mental Health. What sets us apart is all of the in-house support mechanisms we offer to help our patients thrive including, Psychiatry, Primary Care, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Individual Counseling, Family & Group Counseling, Group Meetings, Social Work/Case Management, IOP (Intensive Outpatient Program), & PHP (Partial Hospitalization Program). To our knowledge we are the first out-patient dually licensed OBOT/Mental Health facility to accept insurance in our area. Due to our ability to accept insurance we are able to provide access to treatment for many patients who were unable to afford care previously. We are changing our community one addiction at a time.