FORT WAYNE, Indiana (WANE) – The numbers are staggering: one in five adults suffers from mental illness every year.
For one in 20 people, it’s a serious mental illness every year.
And one in six children, aged 6 to 17, suffers from a mental health disorder each year.
Many people are one personal disaster away from needing mental health treatment, said Jennifer Snyder, CEO of Maple Heights Behavioral Health. Maple Heights is a brand new facility that will provide assistance to those in need.
To help meet the growing mental health needs in Allen County and surrounding areas, Lutheran Medical Group and national health partner Acadia Healthcare have collaborated on the project which will provide inpatient mental health care for adults and seniors for a range of behavioral health issues, including anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a statement sent after Wednesday’s open house and tour of the facility on West Washington Center Road.
The 120-bed, $45 million facility will treat people in crisis with inpatient and outpatient care. It is a replacement for the mental health services offered at the now demolished St. Joe’s Hospital.
Still under construction, the 6-unit, 90,000-square-foot mental health hospital will accept its first patients in early 2023, according to Lutheran officials. Patients range from children to the elderly.
“They had downtown St. Joe, Lutheran Health Network, and then we were able to bring that to fruition, have a joint venture partnership where we could open up Maple Heights and have a stand-alone psychiatric hospital that could serve more people and have individualized care. “Snyder said.
Officials from Lutheran and Acadia, a Nasdaq-listed national company, addressed a standing crowd in the center’s gymnasium and held a ribbon ceremony to celebrate the partnership. Officers from Community Health Services, corporate owner of Lutheran, were also present.
“It is very exciting to think that we will have additional services that are so needed in this state for teenagers, adults, seniors. Eventually, once everything is up and running, all services will be available here,” said Snyder said.
When the installation is complete, there will be courtyards for each unit, a gymnasium and indoor activity rooms for quiet and loud activities. The center will offer art therapy, yoga and treatments that will create coping mechanisms, Snyder said.
The goal, Snyder says, is to accept everyone, including Medicaid patients. Another Lutheran official said Maple Heights will be a place where police can bring individuals for assessment. Snyder said she would seek an opportunity to work with the criminal justice system.
It won’t take long to fill the beds, said Allen Superior Court Judge Andrew Williams, who is a county mental health judge and civil cases judge.
According to his biography on the court’s website, Williams “is responsible for issuing emergency detention orders for mental health evaluations and adjudicating applications for involuntary recognizances.” He also oversees the Superior Court’s Mental Health Task Force, which includes members of law enforcement, mental health providers and community mental health advocates.
“When St. Joe closed their psychiatric unit, we were in a position where we had to send people out of the county,” Williams said Wednesday. “It’s very exciting. It opens up another option for us. Allen County is also getting patients from other counties ‘because we have the best resources,'” he added.
The option currently available is Parkview Behavioral Health, which has 89 beds with 124 beds available throughout the Parkview system, according to Chuck Clark, president of the Parkview Behavioral Institute and CEO of Park Center.
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