This week, the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board approved Silver Cross Hospital and US HealthVest’s certificate of need application to build a 100-bed psychiatric hospital in New Lenox. Silver Oaks Hospital will address the mental health and substance abuse crisis in Will and Grundy counties by expanding inpatient and outpatient services.
“While Silver Cross Hospital has had a 20 bed adult inpatient mental health unit for many years, we recognize that it is too small and because of that we cannot provide specialized services by patient condition,” said Paul Pawlak, President/CEO of Silver Cross Hospital. “By partnering with US HealthVest to build and operate this new hospital, we will be able to offer a full spectrum of inpatient and outpatient mental health and substance abuse services for youth, adults, and seniors so they can stay close to home for expert care.”
One in four Americans across the country suffer from a mental health condition. According to the 2016 Will County Community Needs assessment, mental health has been identified as the top unmet need year after year. Area emergency rooms and jails are filled with people waiting for placement. In fact, 70% of healthcare providers surveyed said they refer people with mental illnesses to local emergency departments because of access issues. With the closing of the Tinley Park Mental Health Center in 2012, there has been a shortage of beds forcing more than 60% of mental health and chemically dependent patients to leave the area for care. Because of these gaps in service, many have gone without treatment leading to the increase in addictions to opiates, heroin and alcohol in our community. Yet, despite massive community outreach efforts, heroin claimed the lives of 70 victims in Will County last year alone.
Construction of the 2-story, 68,000 sq. ft. hospital will begin in fall 2017 and is scheduled for completion in December 2018. The secured facility will be located on approximately 5 acres of land on the west side of Silver Cross Hospital’s campus at I-355 and Route 6.