The Right Care at the Right Time
People experiencing a psychiatric emergency can’t always get the help they need when they need it. Emergency Departments are not designed for treating these types of issues. Too often mental health needs go untreated which can lead to homelessness, loss of employment, damaged relationships, incarceration, or suicide. It is time to change that.
Lifeways, Inc., provides comprehensive mental health services. We are here to help with any mental health problem from mild depression or anxiety to the most severe disorders.
Projected to open in Fall 2017, Lifeways will open the new Aspen Springs Hospital to provide essential acute inpatient psychiatric services for the Eastern Oregon region.
Aspen Springs Psychiatric Facility
What is Aspen Springs?
Aspen Springs Psychiatric Facility will be a 16-bed acute inpatient psychiatric facility serving the Eastern Oregon region. This new Lifeways hospital will be located near the Good Shepherd Health Care System campus in Hermiston, forming a unique partnership intended to meet the complex special needs of psychiatric patients burdening our local rural hospitals. Aspen Springs fills a much needed gap in mental health care and fulfills a promise to care for those most vulnerable in society.
Why Do We Need These Services?
Most rural hospitals have no psychiatrists on staff or specialty units to care for mental illness. As a result, patients are inadequately cared for in the emergency room or sit in limbo waiting for beds in specialty care.
The shortage of mental health beds nationally is much worse in rural Oregon. Just five years ago, there were 28 psychiatric beds available per 100,000. Today there are only eight. These shortages result in frequent readmission to emergency departments and ineffective treatment placing patients, families, and our communities at risk.
Aspen Springs will provide a secure and safe setting to evaluate and treat severe and persistent mental health problems. This facility will provide a much needed service to a rapidly aging Medicare population in need of psychiatric treatment, and also reduce the need to refer patients to facilities out-of-state or far from home and family supports, in turn reducing wait times for beds in specialty care.
How Is This Project Being Funded?
Eastern Oregon Human Services Consortium and Greater Oregon Behavioral Health, Inc., recognized the importance and value of this exciting community collaboration with a sizable contribution of seed money for the project start. Additionally, Good Shepherd Health Care System, Hermiston, Oregon, has contributed greatly with their generous collaboration of the land. Lifeways will invest by a match of another $3.5 million in-kind support via capital grants from foundations, commercial bank loans and other debt financing.
Currently Aspen Springs is under construction, using local subcontractors, with a cost of $4.8 million and an annual operating cost of $2.8 million. More than 30 new jobs are planned with an average annual salary of $45,000. This results in an annual economic impact of $4 million to the community. Our use of local contractors will result in $6.7 million and 60 new jobs during the construction phase.
Good Shepherd Health Care System is providing the land to help form the basis of this collaborative partnership. Hermiston is an ideal location to serve the region’s inpatient psychiatric needs because of close proximity to high need communities throughout Eastern Oregon. Primarily, counties served will include Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, Baker, and Malheur. These counties represent a total population of 163,401 and 25,880 square miles representing 4% of Oregon’s population and 27% of the land mass. The frontier nature of these counties adds access strain to patients and families as the attempt to secure psychiatric services close to home.
We are proud of our collaborative partners and wish to thank the following who have joined us in this vision:
- Good Shepherd Health Care System
- Eastern Oregon Human Services Consortium
- Greater Oregon Behavioral Health Initiative
- Pinnacle Architecture
- WC Construction
- Zion’s Bank