AG announces grant for new mental health center

Staff Report -

ATHENS — Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced Tuesday a new grant to the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Ohio (NAMI) to help construct a first-of-its-kind community mental health center in Athens, Ohio.

When completed, the center will be the first in the state to provide patients with extended in-residence psychiatric care, serving as a “step-down” facility for patients from the nearby Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare.

The Adam-Amanda Mental Health Rehabilitation Center, named for two young adults who suffered from mental illness, will teach daily living skills and provide patients with extensive counseling, psychotherapy, and access to medical and dental care.

“I am pleased that my office is able to support the Adam-Amanda center,” said Attorney General Mike DeWine. “When opened, I am confident this center will be an important asset to those who struggle with mental illness and their families.”

According to NAMI, when a person is admitted to a hospital in a mental health crisis, he or she stays an average of seven days before being discharged. NAMI expects the time frame for a stay at the new center to increase to 50 days, enabling individuals to receive concentrated care and stabilize under supervision.

“This grant from the Attorney General’s Office brings us one step closer to providing this critical service of extended care to patients suffering from severe mental illness,” said Terry Russell, executive director of NAMI Ohio. “The Adam-Amanda center’s focus on providing extended support and important medical and mental health services means these patients will have a greater chance of experiencing a full life.”

The $60,351 grant is from settlement funds and will go toward construction of the center. The land and a building for the center were donated by the Athens-Hocking-Vinton Mental Health and Recovery Board.

The 16-bed facility will be built by renovating an existing facility owned by the Athens-Hocking-Vinton Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board.

Staff Report