Lacey mental health hospital approved

A new mental health hospital in Lacey has been given the go-ahead by the Washington state Department of Health.

US HealthVest has been awarded the “certificate of need” for a 75-bed behavioral health center to be placed in an old office building in Lacey’s Woodland District.

Chief Executive Officer Richard A. Kresch, M.D, says the facility will be an in- and out-patient treatment center with an average stay of around seven to eight days.

Kresch says the hospital will specialize in treatment for Detox, psychiatric needs, and behavioral services. He believes the center will be open in late 2018.

“I think everyone knows that mental health is an issue that needs to be addressed,” said Andy Ryder, Mayor of Lacey. Ryder says the community is in desperate need of a mental health hospital. “We see the need in our homeless population and a lot of communities are asking what can we do.”

Providence Health and Services has fought against the new hospital by appealing the Department of Health’s decision. Providence says it has concerns that the new facility won’t meet the needs of underserved patients in the community.

US HealthVest also owns and operates the Smokey Point Behavioral Hospital in Marysville.