Behavioral health unit opening in Pulaski


A new behavioral health unit opens at LewisGale Hospital Pulaski this month. The unit will be for those struggling with mental health or substance abuse disorders.

From a comfort room to peace and quiet, Transitions Behavioral Health Unit will provide a range of services.

“The group therapies would consist of coping skills, art, music, we would do some psycho-education,” says Leigh Gathings, program director at Transitions.

The center offers eight rooms with double occupancy, or 18 beds total.

“Sixteen beds is a start and I think that there’s a strong chance if we go down the road, a year or two, we might be looking at additional expansion. Certainly this is the first step in that process,” says Sean Pressman, CEO of LewisGale Hospital Pulaski.

The center was built in Pulaski because of the need for local services.

“Probably two-thirds of patients who needed in-patient crisis management were actually being sent to other communities around the state,” says Pressman.

The expected average stay is five to seven days, but patients will receive support services once released.

“We know we can’t fix all their problems in a short five to seven day time period. What you can do is align them with the right resources,” says Pressman.

But beyond what’s on the surface, the center wants to provide hope to a growing community.

“Any way a community hospital can positively impact the citizens of that community, then we’re achieving our goal and we’re being successful and that’s our strategy moving forward,” says Pressman.

Transitions Behavioral Health is scheduled to open August 27th.

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