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SalusCare to rebuild its closed Crisis Stabilization Unit

SalusCare to rebuild its closed Crisis Stabilization Unit

SalusCare’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee have authorized a phased rebuilding of the Crisis Stabilization Unit, which has been closed since Hurricane Ian due to storm damage.

Construction is scheduled to begin once the permit is issued.

“We have explored our funding options and we are rebuilding. We made this decision because there are not enough crisis beds in Lee County to begin with, and every day we delay in getting the unit reopened, it hurts the community and those who need our services,” said Stacey Cook, CEO of SalusCare. “In making the decision, our board, in collaboration with our partners and regulatory agencies, did its due diligence to make sure we explored all options and the impact on our long-term operations and budget.”

During Hurricane Ian, SalusCare’s 46-bed (16-bed children and 30-bed adult) Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU) was flooded, with moisture rising two feet up the walls. As a result, the CSU, where some of the area’s most severe and immediate mental health patients are treated, remains closed. SalusCare’s insurers covering wind and water for the facility denied paying for repairs necessary for reopening.

The CSU receives 500 to 600 patients a month to evaluate through the Baker Act, with an average patient census of 250 to 300 children and adults in crisis a month. While the unit is closed, Lee Health emergency department, Park Royal Hospital, the David Lawrence Center and Charlotte Behavioral Health Care are having to process and care for patients that would typically go to the SalusCare CSU.

To get the unit reopened, SalusCare will fund the construction through a loan, with the hope of support from the community through donations to help cover the estimated $1.5 million cost. SalusCare is licensed and partially funded in part through contracts by the Florida Department of Children and Families through the Central Florida Behavioral Health Network, Inc., Lee County, third-party payers, insurance, patient fees, donations and as a United Way partner agency. To donate to support rebuilding of the Crisis Care Center and other SalusCare’s mental and behavioral health programs, visit saluscareflorida.org.


SalusCare is a Fort Myers-based, not-for-profit mental health and substance abuse service provider incorporated in 2013 after the merger of Lee Mental Health Center and Southwest Florida Addiction Services (SWFAS) to ultimately improve care for children and adults by utilizing one seamless system of care. “Salus” means health, prosperity and safety, reflecting the focus of the organization. A United Way partner agency, SalusCare has six locations with more than 350 employees throughout Southwest Florida, bringing hope and recovery to nearly 16,000 adults and children each year. All substance abuse programs and most mental health services are accredited by CARF International, an independent, nonprofit accreditor of health and human services. For information, visit saluscareflorida.org or call 239-275-3222.

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