Scenic Mountain Medical Center unveiled the 20-bed, Behavioral Health Unit on Feb. 28th. Emma Krabill, SMMC CEO, and Shelley Smith, West Texas Centers CEO, spoke about the evolution of the partnership and the new unit's importance to the community.
"This is one of the first private / public partnerships in the state. As a mental health professional, to serve this population well we always need inpatient and outpatient services. This entire project has been made possible by the individuals who have never let discouragement get in our way," said Smith. "SMMC CEO Emma Krabill has been a perfect partner for this endeavor and we are both excited about the future. We are so excited to see this come to fruition."
The inpatient unit is staffed with Registered Nurses, Mental Health Technicians, Recreational Therapists, Social Workers, and Counselors. In addition to the staff, there is a board certified psychiatrist, Dr. Nekesha Oliphant, who will be overseeing the care provided.
"We [Scenic Mountain] are honored to be able to be part of this partnership that will allow the civil population to receive behavioral health inpatient services. When we look at new services an new providers, we weigh them against what is best for the community and how will this addition meet the needs of the community," Krabill said. "This partnership project was a no brainer. The payback on the investment is one that is going to come back through much needed services for our community. Projects like this allow them to give back to the community and see how much of an impact we can make."
The Behavioral Health Unit will be under the direction of Ed Moughon and Stacy Flores. Moughon will be serving as the unit director. Together, the team brings almost 30 years of experience to the table.
"Due to the lack of access to this service, in the West Texas Centers service area, I am honored to be working with the team and to be able to help make this idea a reality," said Moughon.
Smith added, "Big Spring State Hospital serves as a forensic hospital and they are not able to serve the civil population, except on rare occasions. West Texas Centers serves a 23 county area providing mental health services for approximately 2500 individuals per month. In 2017, WTC served approximately 200 individuals in mental crisis services with 40 percent of our hospital admissions being from Big Spring. We are expecting the unit to be full."
To find out more about the new behavioral health unit at Scenic Mountain Medial Center, visit www.SMMCCares.com and click on the Behavioral Health Services link.