Increased Precautions We're Taking in Response to COVID-19

LAST UPDATED ON 03/15/2021

As updates on the impact of the coronavirus continue to be released, we want to take a moment to inform you of the heightened preventative measures we have put in place at SUWS of the Carolinas to keep our patients, their families, and our employees safe. All efforts are guided by and in adherence to the recommendations distributed by the CDC.

Please note that for the safety of our patients, their families, and our staff, there are certain restrictions in place regarding on-site visitation at SUWS of the Carolinas.

  • These restrictions have been implemented in compliance with updated corporate and state regulations to further reduce the risks associated with COVID-19.
  • Options for telehealth visitation are continuously evaluated so that our patients can remain connected to their loved ones.
  • Alternate methods of communication for other services may be offered when deemed clinically appropriate.

For specific information regarding these changes and limitations, please contact us directly.

CDC updates are consistently monitored to ensure that all guidance followed is based on the latest information released.

  • All staff receives ongoing infection prevention and control training.
  • Thorough disinfection and hygiene guidance is provided.
  • Patient care supplies such as masks and hand sanitizer are monitored and utilized.
  • Temperature and symptom screening protocols are in place for all patients and staff.
  • Social distancing strategies have been implemented to ensure that patients and staff maintain proper distance from one another at all times.
  • Cleaning service contracts have been reviewed for additional support.
  • Personal protective equipment items are routinely checked to ensure proper and secure storage.
  • CDC informational posters are on display to provide important reminders on proper infection prevention procedures.

The safety of our patients, their families, and our employees is our top priority, and we will remain steadfast in our efforts to reduce any risk associated with COVID-19.

The CDC has provided a list of easy tips that can help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then immediately dispose of the tissue.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

For detailed information on COVID-19, please visit

Meet Our Clinical Staff

We remain open and are continuing to accept new admissions.

SUWS of the Carolinas remains committed to providing clinically superior services within a safe and supportive environment while taking all appropriate precautions to protect the well-being of our students and staff.

For admissions information, or to learn more about the heightened preventive measures we have put in place, please click the link at the top of this page or call us at (828) 489-3198.

Drew Schnyder, MD

Medical Director

The SUWS Medical Director is Drew David Schnyder, MD. Dr. Schnyder is a graduate of the Medical College of Georgia and a board certified family practice physician with two medical offices in the Old Fort, NC area. After his residency training, Dr. Schnyder spent nearly 10 years with the US Air Force and has received specialized training in Wilderness Medicine, Expeditionary Medicine, NASA Space Shuttle Recovery Program and Military Field Trauma Medicine. He is currently certified in Advanced Trauma Life Support, and is an Adult and Pediatric Cardiac Life Support instructor. During his four years stationed in Japan, he was the director of training for the advanced independent paramedics and personally supported special operational missions in the austere environs of Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Laos. During his 3.5 years working at Aviano Air Base, Italy as the Chief of Aerospace Medicine / flight surgeon, his duty regularly involved extraction of injured military personnel in Afghanistan, Iraq and other middle eastern locations and the medical support of two F-16 fighter squadrons.

Dr. Schnyder provides 24/7 support for the SUWS students, both for emergency consultation, or for treatment of other minor medical issues. His specialized training grants him unique insight and expertise into the management of patients in a wilderness environment with exposures to extremes in weather and a variety of physical and emotional stresses. His extensive work with illness and trauma in the austere environment, both directly and in command positions, makes him well suited to make experienced-based judgment calls regarding management of a variety of situations that may arise.

After leaving the Air Force in 2012, Dr. Schnyder moved to Western NC with his wife Rayne and their two children, Samuel and Emma. His personal interests include rock climbing, tennis, blues, Italian culture and travel.

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The wilderness therapy offered at SUWS was the dynamic solution needed to help my son with his behavioral issues. When my son left SUWS, he was completely changed for the better and also created new bonds and unforgettable memories! I can't recommend SUWS enough for anyone in a similar situation!

– Britney A.
Marks of Quality Care
Why does this matter?
  • Cognia
  • American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM)
  • Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF)
  • Forest Service Department of Agriculture
  • National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP)
  • National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC)
  • NC Department of Health and Human Services
  • Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare Council
  • Safe Zone
  • Sky's The Limit Fund
  • The Jason Foundation

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