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Regions Hospital to Open New Inpatient Behavioral Health Unit
Date:2/18/2008

ST. PAUL, Minn., Feb. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Regions Hospital this week opens a new 16-bed inpatient behavioral health unit -- a first of its kind in the region -- with an innovative way of caring for patients. Psychiatrists on the unit will work a seven-day-on/seven-day-off schedule, providing improved continuity and a better experience for patients.

The new care model involves psychiatrists who will provide care for patients once they arrive in the emergency department throughout their stay on 3 behavioral health (3BH), the new short-stay unit where patients will be hospitalized from one to five days.

"This unit will help patients who will benefit from various kinds of treatment options including group and individual counseling, and motivational therapy," said Craig Coenson, M.D., lead psychiatrist on 3BH. "Although 3BH is only one piece of a larger puzzle to resolving the behavioral health crisis, it's an important step toward helping patients needing short-term care. It exemplifies the importance of partnerships between hospitals and community resources that provide behavioral health care."

Regions emergency department treats more than 6,000 behavioral health patients each year. One-third of these patients wait in our emergency department more than 12 hours before an inpatient bed becomes available. The new unit at Regions will allow patients to be moved through the emergency department more quickly, therefore freeing up space for other patients needing behavioral health care.

Across the river, Hennepin County Medical Center recognizes the vital role Regions plays in the east metro and has supported Regions' expansion by transferring 27 beds to Regions.

"We have continued to respond to mental health needs in the west metro by doubling the size of our acute psychiatric emergency department. We are opening 15 new inpatient beds to bring Hennepin's inpatient psychiatry capacity to 102 beds," said Lynn Abrahamsen, CEO of Hennepin County Medical Center. "At the same time, we're pleased to be able to support the work of Regions to expand capacity in the east metro."

As the largest provider of inpatient behavioral health care in the east metro, Regions' newest unit increases the number of behavioral health beds from 80 to 96. Overall, Regions is utilizing 426 licensed beds. The additional 27 beds from HCMC bring Regions' licensed bed capacity to 454, providing short-term relief to the increasing demand for hospital services.


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SOURCE Regions Hospital
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