HAGERSTOWN, Md. —Meritus Health, in keeping with its mission of “Improving the Health of the Community,” is proudly expanding access to mental health services this month.
The health system will open the Meritus Crisis Center, a six-bed inpatient unit,to support the needs of those struggling with addiction, as well as, a new Mental Health Walk-In Care facility that will provide mental health services to individuals in need of immediate help, assessment and intervention. Both are located on the Meritus Medical Center campus on Medical Campus Drive, via the Orange Entrance.
In partnership with Brook Lane Health Services, the Mental Health Walk-In Care facility will serve as a crucial resource for individuals aged 6 and older, catering to children, adolescents and adults facing mild-to-moderate mental health crises.
“We are here to help our neighbors get access to the care they need,” said Meritus Health President and CEO, Maulik Joshi, Dr.P.H. “We have continued to see the need for these services and are proud to be partnering with Brook Lane to make sure our community has easy access.”
“Joining forces with Meritus Health on this initiative is a testament to the power of collaboration in making a positive impact on the lives of those struggling with mental health challenges. Our combined expertise, resources and dedication will not only be treating mental health emergencies, but also offering a pathway to ongoing care, fostering long-term mental well-being for our community,” CEO of Brook Lane, Jeffery D. O’Neal, said.
Allen Twigg, executive director of behavioral and community health said the health system’s most recent Community Health Needs Assessment highlighted a steady increase of drug overdose fatalities in Washington County over the last 10 years, at a rate that’s higher than the state average.
The Meritus Crisis Center expands on a pilot initiative offering three crisis stabilization beds with a goal of serving 150 patients in a year. The pilot was very successful, with an 82% linkage rate with treatment upon discharge.
Crisis stabilization beds provide a safe environment for a patient struggling with substance abuse, while they await a treatment program.
“We are honored to expand this desperately-needed service to our community,” Twigg said. “This represents a significant step forward in improving access to timely and effective behavioral health care, and we are dedicated to supporting the well-being of our community,” he added.