On Monday, Dec. 11, Olympia Behavioral Health LLC (OBH), US HealthVest (USHV) and the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) signed a three-party settlement agreement to address the need for inpatient psychiatric beds in Thurston County and the surrounding area. OBH is a joint venture between Providence St. Peter Hospital and Fairfax Behavioral Health, a subsidiary of Universal Health Services (UHS).
Earlier this week, OBH received conditional approval from DOH to establish an 85-bed psychiatric hospital, which is the full number of beds that it requested in its Certificate of Need (CN) application. The official CN will be issued following the completion of the City of Lacey’s Conditional Use Permit (CUP) process in 2018. At this time, the hospital is anticipated to open in mid-2019.
Overall, the settlement paves the way for both OBH and USHV to establish and operate inpatient psychiatric hospitals in Thurston County. Both providers also accepted terms related to the provision of care for involuntary (ITA) patients, which will serve to ensure the needs of all patients are met by both OBH and USHV within the community.
“Thank you to our community and partners who have remained committed to the Providence and Fairfax mission through this journey,” said Medrice Coluccio, chief executive for Providence in Southwest Washington. “This settlement agreement represents a pivotal milestone, reaching consensus about how best to address the unmet needs of patients and families in our community who need mental health care. Because of the unwavering dedication of our community and local partners, we are able to celebrate this new beginning and build upon the existing services that Providence already provide. This is a true win for our community.”
“Fairfax has been a leader in providing behavioral health services to the community for more than 87 years,” said Fairfax chief executive officer Ron Escarda. “With that strength and depth of experience, we are excited to pair with Providence’s strong presence and commitment to the communities they serve.”
“We are pleased to expand our partnership with Providence, ensuring that critical mental health and substance use treatment is accessible to the residents of Thurston County and the surrounding area,” said Debbie Osteen, executive vice president and president of the behavioral healthcare division of UHS.
OBH will serve both voluntary and involuntary patients age five years and older. The hospital will build upon the Providence and Fairfax principles of caring for patients who need mental health services with compassion, kindness, dignity, excellence, and respect, while providing a supportive environment and treatment to help them heal. The hospital aims to be recognized as the premier regional provider of innovative, compassionate behavioral health services, which will enhance the health of the community. In addition, the new psychiatric hospital will continue to rely upon the long-standing, collaborative relationships that have been formed with other community providers and partner organizations in Thurston County to provide a seamless continuum of care.