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Asante's Behavioral Health Unit on schedule to open March 2020

The construction is just one part of the $11 million Behavioral Health Initiative. Hospital staff will also be trained to better care for mental health patients.

Posted: Oct 10, 2019 3:59 AM
Updated: Oct 10, 2019 7:18 AM

MEDFORD, Ore. -- The Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center said they are on schedule to open a new Behavioral Health Unit in March of next year. This will be the only in-patient mental health unit in between the Bay Area and Eugene, Oregon. 

This construction is just one part of the $11 million Behavioral Health Initiative. Hospital staff will also be trained to better care for mental health patients. 

The new Behavioral Health Unit is bigger and will have 24 beds for patients, according to Asante Foundation Campaign Director Andrea Reeder. The unit will have bedrooms, a dining room, a group room and an outdoor courtyard. The rooms will be painted in warm colors. 

Patient rooms are being built with big windows. This way, the rooms will get lots of natural light and feel more like a healing environment as opposed to a punitive environment, according to Reeder. It is important that patients feel comfortable in the Behavioral Health Unit because many will stay there for long-term treatment, Reeder said. 

"Folks who come to Asante in crisis can spend more time here fully recovering and being stable before they are discharged," said Reeder. "When they are discharged, they'll still have the resources they need to maintain their new stability."

Through the Behavioral Health Initiative, all health care workers at Asante will be trained in the new Sanctuary Care Model. This is considered a trauma informed model of care, said Reeder. 

"Rather than saying, 'what is wrong with you,' to the patient it's asking, 'what has happened to you,'" said Reeder. "The Behavioral Health Unit has been fully certified in this new model of care. They are seeing tremendous results, shorter stays, fewer medications, nearly eliminating restraint and seclusion."

The Asante Foundation is responsible for raising $5 million out of the $11 million dollars that is needed to complete the Behavioral Health Initiative. So far, the Foundation has raised $3 million. 

The Asante Foundation said that you can also work with them to become a Behavioral Health Champion. Champions meet every other month to learn more about Asante's mental health resources. Those Champions spread the word about Asante's Behavioral Health Initiative by becoming advocates, connectors and donors. 

For more information about how to donate to the Foundation or become a Behavioral Health Champion click here. You can also call this number: (541) 789-5025.

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