John Randolph expands mental health services
By Caitlin Davis, Senior Staff Writer
Feb 3, 2014, 12:29
The new wellness pavilion offers sweeping views of the rivers in Hopewell.
HOPEWELL — Area residents will now have access to behavioral health services closer to home. John Randolph Medical Center opened their new wellness pavilion, which will offer around-the-clock care for those needing help beyond the emergency room.
What was once a nursing home and then office space for medical staff will now be a place for behavioral and mental health services, from outpatient to inpatient care. Completed in just under three months, with a price tag just under $1 million, the pavilion includes an assessment and referral department, consultation rooms, family rooms, a visitor waiting room and safe room.
In the coming months, inpatient services will move from the main building to the pavilion and will expand from 24 to 40 beds. For the time being, the pavilion will have programs for outpatient behavioral health services, partial hospitalization, which includes a four-hour-a-day program and a more intensive, six-hour-a-day program, as well as group therapy and one-on-one meetings with therapists and behavioral health specialists.
The pavilion, located adjacent to the hospital’s main building, has sweeping views of the river from many of the windows as well as natural light which streams in from every room of the facility. Suzanne Jackson, chief executive officer of John Randolph, said this was done to give those coming in for treatment a safe and inviting environment.
“Our assessment and referral department is relocating over here with a very focused and comprehensive way of designing the rooms that is therapeutic and inviting,” Jackson said at the opening ceremony on Thursday morning. “If you take a look at the view, it’s very strategic of us using the water for this particular population.”
It was that population that John Randolph wanted to reach out to. Jackson said the need for additional care for that population had becoming critical with the passing years.
“Clearly there is a need in the community for additional mental health services, making sure that we’re readily accessible at any given time, that we have beds,” Jackson said. “That’s why the expansion of 24 to 40 beds is so critical. That people do not have to leave the community in order to get their services.”
The opening of the pavilion also allows for additional partnerships in the community to grow in the behavioral health field as well. The pavilion’s large group rooms, with the group size being anywhere from 10 to 15, will be home to outpatient services such as meetings with Alcoholics Anonymous and the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Dr. Rakesh Shah, medical director of behavioral health services, has been with the hospital for just over two and a half years and since that time has seen a greater and greater need for a facility such as the pavilion. From the outpatient care, to the soon-to-be inpatient care on the second floor, Shah said the expansion will provide more help to the surrounding communities.
The current construction that is on going at the hospital. Part of the renovations include resurfacing of the parking lot and new lighting to be added. Phase one of the four phase project should be completed by spring.
“I think definitely we needed to increase our services so people can get more and more help and we can reach out to them whenever they need the service,” Shah said. “... We are seeing that the demand is so high that we are not able to help people in the community so we are committed to helping people in the community and that’s one of the reasons that we thought that this might be a very good move to help people in the community.”
In addition to the opening of the new facility, John Randolph is currently undergoing a beautification project. The four phase renovation and beautification project, which Jackson said will encompass the entire outside of the hospital, includes a new canopy, a new drop-off entrance, roundabout for outpatient services, a separate exit for ambulances, and the parking lot is currently being resurfaced and new lighting will be added.
Perhaps the addition that Jackson is most looking forward to is the new life that will be included outside the hospital. The beautification includes flowers and trees to be planted around the hospital, which to Jackson, represent a sense of hope and comfort for incoming patients.
“We’re a place that provides hope for a better future for people and that’s mental health or physical health,” Jackson said. “We come in we’re addressing people, taking care of people who are in crisis and are feeling hopeless and we give them hope, but part of that is also letting them be hopeful when they’re driving up. If they have to be here, they can be excited about where they’re going, also for the employees and for the medical staff and for the community to know that HCA is making an investment in this hospital and in this community to ensure that people know that we are here and we’re here to provide them care.”
The investment for phase one of the beautification project came in at just under a million dollars, Jackson said. The projected timeline for the completion of phase one of the project will be spring of this year. Phase two of the behavioral health pavilion will begin shortly and is estimated to cost over $3 million for the total project. Jackson said the hope is to have the entire behavioral health services to be moved to the pavilion by fall of this year.