Two new behavioral health care facilities, including a new emergency department, are being integrated into the UPH Hospital Campus in Tucson, AZ. Construction began October 2009 and is expected to be completed in August 2011.
The facilities will offer an integrated approach and a continuum of care for patients experiencing behavioral health crises involving mental illness and/or substance use.
The innovative, collaborative effort brings together the entire community including behavioral health care, physical health care, law enforcement, families, and consumers to deliver an integrated approach to behavioral health treatment.
The new facilities will ease the pressure on Pima County's community resources such as emergency rooms and detention centers. They will also provide a setting to train new physicians in an integrated health care environment.
The facilities are being created through a unique partnership between public and private entities. Participating partners are:
- Pima County
- University Physicians Healthcare
- Community Partnership of Southern Arizona
- University of Arizona College of Medicine
The Behavioral Health Pavilion will provide inpatient, outpatient, and emergency medical and psychiatric services. The three-story pavilion will include:
- Emergency department
- Private inpatient beds
- Outpatient services
- Classroom and teaching facilities, and
- Courtroom for patients admitted through the legal system
The Crisis Response Center (CRC) will provide assessment, stabilization, and treatment to individuals in crisis who do not require emergency medical or acute psychiatric care.
The CRC will support behavioral health service providers and law enforcement agencies with individuals in crisis.
The two-story center will include:
- A state-of-the-art call center to direct individuals in crisis to the most appropriate resource in the community
- Comprehensive screening/triage and assessment services
- Crisis stabilization services for adults and youth
- A 15 bed sub-acute inpatient unit for adults
- Coordination of non-emergency transportation, and
- Co-location of community partners to facilitate coordination of care
History of the Project
The vision for a psychiatric facility was developed in response to the strain on Tucson‚Äôs health care system from increasing numbers of individuals with mental health and substance abuse disorders.
Many patients in crisis are routinely brought to the area's hospital emergency rooms by law enforcement, community agencies, or family members due to a lack of facilities specifically for behavioral health crises. In addition, the mixing of behavioral health patients and patients with immediate medical problems in emergency departments disrupts care for both groups and further taxes the overloaded emergency health care system.
In 2004, Pima County voters approved a $12 million request for partial replacement of the existing psychiatric facilities at UPH Hospital using Pima County General Obligation Bonds.
However, seeing as much as a 20% increase in behavioral health patients each year, hospital planners recommended expanding the project to its current level. In 2006, two bond packages were approved totaling $54 million for the new facilities. The bonds were approved by more than 60% of voters.
The collaborative effort brings together the entire community including behavioral health care, physical health care, law enforcement, families, and consumers to deliver an integrated approach to behavioral health treatment.