Organizations plan center in Grand Rapids to help with mental health crisis

There are plans in Grand Rapids for a new emergency care center to help people overcome a behavioral or mental health problem. The new facility would create a short-term, secure facility where people could stay and get help. Network180 and Mercy Health, the two organizations behind the effort, have often said now that these people end up in jail cells or in emergency departments.

Network 180 is the state-approved coalition for mental health crises in Kent County. Bill Ward is the leader. He said the goal is to have more services for each type of mental health crisis.

“We want to make sure that all of these levels of care are available to anyone in Kent County, regardless of their insurance status,” Ward said.

He said a crisis center can also help when patients need longer-term mental health care, but beds are full in inpatient facilities. “Then we want to have a place for them to be safe and potentially improve, sort of to bring the crisis down until we can get them into one of these facilities. ‘hospitalization,’ Ward said.

The new short-term facility is expected to open in about a year. Ward says that for now, residents of Grand Rapids facing a mental or behavioral health crisis can contact Network180 directly. A complete list of hotlines for all Michigan counties is available here.

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