The building of a new state psychiatric hospital in Fulton is now underway. Governor Jay Nixon spoke at Wednesday’s groundbreaking and says the state-of-the-art facility is critical for people with challenges.
Nixon says the maximum security facility will be a game changer for those suffering from severe mental illness.
“It will be a cohesive, secure and therapeutic environment. It will include a 300 bed, high security hospital,” says Nixon.
The new campus will include improved vocational and recreational rehab facilities, modern dietary services, a new administration building, an auditorium and a high efficiency heating and cooling system.
“That’s why the way we did it over the last three years to put some general revenue in to make sure we had the planning done. When interest rates were low we made the long term investment that this facility is,” said Nixon.
Fulton State Hospital was built in 1851 and is the oldest state psychiatric hospital west of the Mississippi River. Last year, the Legislature backed the Governor’s plan to replace the outdated and deteriorating facility with the new hospital that will be safer for patients and staff and more conducive to modern treatment.
The Department of Mental Health is slated to have the project finished by the end of 2017.
Dan Patterson, KWIX, contributed to this story.