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New Behavioral Health Crisis Center breaks ground in Cape Girardeau

Groundbreaking for Cape Girardeau Community Counseling Center
Published: May. 23, 2022 at 7:03 PM CDT|Updated: May. 24, 2022 at 2:47 AM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Cape Girardeau will be home to a new crisis center later this year.

On Monday, representatives from the Community Counseling Center, the Gipson Center for Behavioral Change, along with other organizations, came together to hold a groundbreaking for the new Behavioral Health Crisis Center.

This new facility will be able to give a person with a crisis an option to seek help with the latest resources offered in the area.

We talked with the Gipson Center of Behavioral Change’s Chief Operating Officer Ryan Essex who says this new facility is a great addition for the area and is vitally important for the health of the long-term community.

“They’re in such pain generally when they come to us,” Essex said. “When law enforcement picks them up, they may be under the influence or suffering from some type of major depression or psychosis and if law enforcement isn’t able to intervene and they don’t have a place to bring them that’s safe and that can help them, then they’re going to continue to struggle out in the community and we don’t want any citizen lost here.”

These centers are opening up in various communities across the State of Missouri. They are small inpatient facilities for people in a behavioral health crisis whose needs cannot be met safely in a residential service setting.

The Behavioral Health Crisis Center will be able to admit people in a secure environment that would be less restrictive than a hospital.

The Behavioral Health Crisis Center Program Manager Savannah Martin says this is much needed in the community to help those in need.

“We really feel there was a gap in resources where when somebody was in behavioral health crisis, the option is to take them to jail, take them to the ER, or do nothing,” Martin said. “And so, this crisis stabilization unit will be able to offer a much needed resource in our community.”

The goal is to get a person stabilized, provide community treatment resources so they are able to get back into the community quickly.

The new facility will be attached to the current Gipson Center for Behavioral Change building and is expected to be open by fall of this year.

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