Rutland Regional celebrates $4.1 million Psychiatric Services renovation

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Rutland Regional celebrates $4.1 million Psychiatric Services renovation

Fri, 09/16/2022 - 4:12am -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine For the first time in over two years, Rutland Regional Medical Center was able to welcome people into the facility to celebrate a major milestone, the completion of renovations to the Psychiatric Service Inpatient Unit (PSIU).

The event took place at 4pm on Wednesday, September 14 in the hospital’s CVPS/Leahy Community Health Education Center on the lower level. Prior to the start of the celebration, Vermont Mental Health Commissioner, Emily Hawes, and Deputy Commissioner Allison Krompf, were given a private tour of PSIU by unit nurse director, Lesa Cathcart.

Joining the tour was Dick Courcelle, Executive Director of Rutland Mental Health, volunteer member of the RRHS/RRMC Board of Directors and chair of the Enhancing Culture of Care campaign as well as Traci Moore, Senior Director of Development and Community Relations at Rutland Regional, Kelly Watson, Chief Nursing Officer, and Dr. Matt Sommons, Psychiatry.

Renovations and improvements throughout the unit include:

  • A total increased bed capacity from 17 to 20, 18 of which are single-bed rooms, an increase from 6 single rooms prior to the renovations
  • Regulatory and safety upgrades to furnishing and finishes
  • Addition of specially framed photography donated by local photographers, and enhanced lighting and aesthetics, such as the use of warm colors to create a welcoming and comfortable environment
  • Improved patient monitoring and lines of sight from the nurses’ station to enhance the safety and security of patients.

At the celebration, Rutland Regional President and CEO Claudio Fort welcomed guests and reflected on Rutland Regional’s long history of stepping forward to meet the psychiatric and mental health needs of the community, including renovations to the hospital’s Emergency Department as well as the opening of the West Ridge Center for Addiction and Recovery. Today, Rutland Regional’s PSIU is one of only five inpatient psychiatric units in Vermont.

“Our hospital has a proud history of providing psychiatric services as a key part of our mission,” said Fort. “The Enhancing the Culture of Care Campaign, helped to shine a light on the increased need for mental health services. Not only did the campaign raise important funds for this project, but -it helped our community to talk differently about mental illness and -reduce the stigma that still exists as a barrier to patients seeking care.”

In his remarks, Dick Courcelle thanked the community for its support of the more than two-year campaign. 

“The campaign helped to raise awareness about the need for and importance of psychiatric and mental health programs and how they can be accessed as our community faced and continues to recover from the health, social and economic impacts of COVID-19,” said Courcelle.

Over the past year, Rutland Regional’s PSIU treated 650 patients, 75% of whom live in the Rutland Regional Service area. Lesa Cathcart, RN, Nurse Director of PSIU, spoke about the importance of creating an atmosphere that is warm, welcoming, and soothing for patients and the process of gathering patient input during the planning and design process. 

“When we were designing our unit, we listened to our patients and we also listened to our community advisory council,” said Lisa Cathcart, RN, Nurse Director of PSIU, “For instance, one of the things that we heard was that it would be really nice for patients to have an area where they could get their medication in private. Here they could have a private conversation with the nurse and ask questions or look for information about medications. And guess what? We have that now. We are also able to provide more programming and activities which is something we were never able to do before.”

Emily Hawes, Commissioner, Vermont Department of Mental Health thanked Rutland Regional and PSIU providers for their investment in PSIU. 

“Ensuring the availability of therapeutic environments, which are focused on healing and helping, remains a priority for the Department of Mental Health,” said Commissioner Hawes. “Having facilities located throughout the state allows individuals the opportunity to receive treatment closer to home so they can remain connected to their family and community networks.”

Project Description and Scope:

PSIU, located on the fourth floor at Rutland Regional’s main campus, has undergone a transformation during the past two years. Changes to the unit include an increase in private bedrooms for patients, a new nurse’s station, furnishings, and regulatory and cosmetic upgrades that have helped to create a safer, more patient-centered and comfortable treatment setting for patients and their families.

Project Cost: $4.1 Million

Project Timeframe:

PSIU Renovation Start Date: July 2019

Project Completion Date: August 2022

About Rutland Regional Medical Center

Rutland Regional Medical Center, founded in 1896, is the largest community hospital and the second largest health care facility in Vermont. Rutland Regional is supported by a medical staff of 271 physicians trained in 37 specialty areas and over 1700 employees. With a strong patient-centered focus, consistent quality performance, Magnet® Nursing Recognition, and award-winning care, Rutland Regional remains dedicated to improving the health of families and individuals throughout Rutland County and beyond.

9.15.2022. Rutland, VT – Rutland Regional Medical Center