More psychiatric beds needed in Colorado

KUSA - 9Wants to Know how untreated mental illness impacts Colorado.

A joint investigation with our partners at I-News at Rocky Mountain PBS found many people have trouble finding spaces in mental health treatment facilities.

There are about 1,100 in-patient psychiatric beds across the state. That's 20 percent fewer than five years ago. As a result. Colorado has one of the worst ratios of beds per capita nationwide.

Some state leaders hope private sector hospitals step up to meet the need.

A new 92-bed facility is currently being built near Loveland.

it's going to be called clearview behavioral health up in Johnstown. It will be open in 2015.We just started groundbreaking a month or so ago.It is going to fill a very important need because people needing services in Northern CO, often have to go as far are Colorado Springs to get those services," said Scott Glaser with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

With a lack of psychiatric treatment beds in the state, people with mental illnesses are often taking up beds in jails.

On Tuesday night 9Wants to know investigator Chris Vanderveen explores how that costs all of us.

(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)


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