01/03/2024

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) Wichita and Sedgwick County received a major push Wednesday to bring a mental hospital to the area. But many other healthcare workers in the area are winners as well.

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The state has approved $25 million for a mental hospital in south central Kansas. The money comes from the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS).


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Mental Health Hospital in Sedgwick County

Sedgwick County will use the money to create a new 50-bed mental health hospital, which will be owned and operated by the state. Currently, the only state mental hospitals are in Larned and Osawatomie.

Officials say the facility will address shortages of inpatient beds and allow patients to stay closer to home and family. Additionally, the extra beds will ease prison overcrowding by reducing wait times for inmates awaiting proficiency assessments or treatment.

The facility will be developed with room for expansion.

At today’s meeting of the Sedgwick County Board of Commissioners, the commissioners heard that the $25 million announcement was imminent. They didn’t know it would happen today. Governor Laura Kelly issued a 1:00 p.m. press release on the Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) grant.

My administration continues to focus on increasing access to mental health care and resources, which is critical to safe and healthy communities, Kelly said.

The rest of the award winners

The $25 million for the south central Kansas mental health facility is just a portion of the $65.4 million in grants announced Wednesday. Grants also target a new mental hospital in Olathe, a joint WSU/KU health sciences training center in Wichita, Derby Hospital and the college of osteopathy in Wichita.

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Kansans with disabilities, long-term care needs and those suffering from mental illness will be the ones to realize the positive changes and impact they will no doubt see as a result of the programs to be implemented by our awardees, Scott Brunner, Deputy Secretary of KDADS of hospitals and facilities, reads a press release.

  • KVC Healthcare Systems: New Joint Venture for Olathe Mental Hospital $12.7 million
    KVC Health Systems has formed a joint venture to build a new 72-bed state-of-the-art mental hospital in Olathe. The project involves the construction of three to 24-bed units, which will provide an additional 48 youth beds and 24 adult beds to the mental health system.
  • Wichita State University and University of Kansas: Health Sciences Education Center (HSEC) $15 million
    Wichita State University and the University of Kansas are collaborating to build a joint health science education center (HSEC) in Wichita. The health sciences complex will centralize health education, collaboration and research. Students will receive state-of-the-art health education that will ultimately improve the quality of health and health outcomes for all Kansans. Initially, approximately 3,000 students and 200 faculty and staff will be housed at the center with opportunities for growth in existing and new programs.
  • Rock Regional Hospital: Growing Community Capacity $5 million
    As a small, independent community hospital, Rock Regional is working to meet the needs of an aging population, declining access to rural hospitals, and overwhelmed urban emergency rooms. Rock Regional will undertake an expansion of service providers to serve the community with additional health care capacity.
  • Kansas Health Science Center: Kansas College of Osteopathic Medicine $5 million
    Class size at the Kansas College of Osteopathic Medicine’s Kansas Health Science Center will nearly double the number of medical students in the next two years. Once fully operational, 170 new doctors will be produced annually. In addition, there is a focus on efforts to retain doctors in Kansas.
  • University of Kansas Health Care Collaboration: ASPIRE Rural Transformation Model $1.1 million
    The University of Kansas Health System Care Collaborative is a clinically integrated network of 82 health care professionals in 72 rural Kansas counties, actively assisting them in implementing new models of care. The project will improve health outcomes in rural communities by strengthening the local delivery system through new models of care while expanding successful Medicare programs to Medicaid beneficiaries through centralized telehealth services. Target outcomes are improved quality outcomes for the management of chronic conditions, reduction in avoidable emergency room visits and hospital admissions, and reduction in hospital admissions. The initial cohort will involve rural hospitals and clinics in Northwest and Central Kansas.
  • Windsor Place: nursing homes without walls $1.6 million
    Windsor Place will conduct a rigorous review of its technology package to improve consumer well-being and impact nursing home admissions, emergency room visits, hospital stays and the overall cost of aged care.

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