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WellSpan opens behavorial health unit in York hospital ER

A behavioral health unit has begun operating in the emergency department at WellSpan York Hospital.

The new unit addresses the need for more behavioral health services, as the emergency department receives about 400 behavioral health patients a month. WellSpan estimates that half of those patients are admitted to the hospital for further treatment and care.

Patients who are coming in for emergency behavioral health often must wait between their emergency visit and placement in some form of long-term treatment.

“We know that behavioral health continues to be a significant and growing community health need across York County,” said Keith Noll, senior vice president of WellSpan Health and president of WellSpan York Hospital. “Our goal with this suite is to provide a high level of specialized care to our behavioral health patients in a safe, private and caring environment.”

WellSpan partnered with Philhaven in January, and the behavioral health unit is representative of the partnership between WellSpan and the Lebanon-based mental health provider.

The unit will have six private rooms, two interview rooms and two quiet rooms.

The behavioral health unit, which opened Friday, is part of an extensive makeover to the hospital’s emergency services.

WellSpan completed the first part of a $50 million renovation in February 2015 when it expanded its helipad by 3,000 square feet. In April WellSpan opened a larger, newly renovated emergency department.

Next up is the expansion of WellSpan’s emergency transitional care unit, which will feature 22 private rooms, with six dedicated to chest pain observation.

Updates will also include a private room dedicated to sexual assault exams.

The final phases of the renovation project are scheduled to be complete in early 2017.

WellSpan York Hospital is the only designated Level I trauma center in York, Adams, Lancaster and Franklin Counties.

Lenay Ruhl

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