$21M expansion coming to Mercy St. Charles

<p>Courtesy: Mercy</p>

Catholic Health Partners is funding a $21 million behavioral health facility to Mercy St. Charles Hospital in Oregon.

The announcement was made Monday in a news conference, which explained the 26,000 square foot expansion.

Construction will begin this spring on the project. The two-story mental health institution will hold 90 beds, giving patients a place for long-term treatment.

"Most people don't put this kind of money into behavioral health," Mercy Chief Operating Officer Imran Andrabi said. "This is a unique opportunity for Mercy and Catholic Health Partners to do that."

Health experts say one in four Americans suffer through a mental health related issue at some point in their life. Doctors said patients in northwest Ohio are no an exception to this finding.

"Ten years ago, we were still bumping along thinking it's all right," Dr. Donna Markham of Catholic Health Partners said. "But clearly it's not all right."

Project organizers said they felt compelled by the recent news of mental health-related tragedies.

"It's not that it just became important. It's always been important," Andrabi said. "I think we're shining a light on it."

The expansion also allocates money for doctors to provide care to patients after their release from the facility.