Advancing Behavioral Health for Eastern North Carolina

We’re taking important steps to bring high-quality behavioral health services to our region.

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Through an innovative partnership with Acadia Healthcare, the nation’s leading provider of behavioral healthcare, we plan to build a 144-bed inpatient treatment facility that will open in Spring 2025. This facility will include 24 inpatient beds dedicated to serving the behavioral health needs of children and adolescents – the only such beds within 75 miles of Greenville.

144

inpatient treatment facility

65

million in behavioral health resources

Together, our organizations will invest approximately $65 million in expanding behavioral health resources by building a center of excellence that provides access to a carefully designed environment where patients of all needs can get the specialized care they deserve.

Meeting Eastern North Carolina’s Behavioral Health Needs

Nearly 100 years ago, Pitt Community Hospital was established to serve the health care needs of Greenville and the surrounding communities. Throughout its evolution, from Pitt County Memorial Hospital, to ECU Health Medical Center, the system has continued to serve an important role as eastern North Carolina’s leader in public health. Given the challenges in access that face our state, and especially our rural communities, we have to think differently about how we’re meeting our patients’ behavioral health needs.

Pitt Memorial Hospital, Greenville, North Carolina, 1950-1959. Courtesy of ECU Digital Collections.

In 2021, out of 50 states and the District of Columbia Mental Health America ranked North Carolina 42nd in adults with any mental illness reporting an unmet need, 44th in overall access to behavioral care services for adults and youths and 45th for youths having a higher prevalence of mental illness and a lower rate of access to care. Prior to the pandemic, nearly one in five North Carolinians experienced a mental illness. In the last two years, the data indicates growing trends of depression and anxiety.

Through this new partnership, we’re reinforcing our commitment to stopping the stigma against mental illness. Mental health issues affect every family and community, and we are committed to talking about mental health, normalizing it and treating it with the latest science and medicine.

About the Partnership

ECU Health is a mission-driven, 1708-bed academic health care system serving more than 1.4 million people in 29 eastern North Carolina counties. The not-for-profit system is comprised of 13,000 team members, nine hospitals and a physician group that encompasses over 1,100 academic and community providers practicing in over 180 primary and specialty clinics located in more than 130 locations. The flagship ECU Health Medical Center, a Level I Trauma Center, and ECU Health Maynard Children’s Hospital serve as the primary teaching hospitals for the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. ECU Health and the Brody School of Medicine share a combined academic mission to improve the health and well-being of eastern North Carolina through patient care, education and research.

For more information, visit ECUHealth.org.

Acadia Healthcare

Acadia is the nation’s largest standalone behavioral health company in the U.S., solely dedicated to the advancement and delivery of behavioral health services. They currently operate a network of more than 238 behavioral health care facilities in 40 states and Puerto Rico and have a track record of successful partnerships with premier health systems across the country.

In partnering with Acadia, a recognized national leader in behavioral health, we will deepen our level of expertise, implement best practices, increase the number of services we provide, enhance teaching opportunities for ECU’s Brody School of Medicine, College of Nursing and College of Allied Health Sciences students and residents, and expand the continuum of care we offer.

For more information, please visit AcadiaHealthcare.com.

About the New Hospital

A Center of Excellence for Adults, Seniors, Children and Adolescents.

This state-of-the-art facility will be a center of excellence that provides a dedicated space for high-quality behavioral health resources. The 144-bed facility will offer comprehensive treatment for adults, seniors, children and adolescents who struggle with acute symptoms of mental health such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The creation of 24 inpatient beds dedicated to serving the mental health needs of children and adolescents is a significant step forward for behavioral health care in eastern North Carolina.

  • 144-bed inpatient psychiatric care facility
  • $65 million investment in behavioral health resources
  • Comprehensive treatment for adults, seniors, children and adolescents
  • Services include anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and more
  • 24 inpatient beds dedicated to children and adolescents

Our Future Is Exciting, And Our Work to Secure It Is Ongoing.

Slated to open in Spring 2025, the new hospital will include 144 beds to meet the demand for inpatient psychiatric care in the region. This new facility represents an approximately $65 million investment in expanding behavioral health resources for the communities and patients we are proud to serve. Construction will begin once all regulatory approvals are met, including a Certificate of Need application filed in July 2022.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of frequently asked questions and answers to help you learn more about our partnership with Acadia Healthcare. You can also submit a question of your own in the box to the right. We will update this page regularly to answer new questions we receive.

Overview

What is being announced?

ECU Health and Acadia Healthcare are excited to announce the formation of a new joint venture to build a brand new, state-of-the-art, 144-bed behavioral health hospital, centrally located in the medical district of Greenville, less than a mile from ECU Health Medical Center.

Is this a merger? Is ECU Health being acquired?

No. This is a joint venture aligning our organization with Acadia who specializes in behavioral health and deepens our abilities to serve our communities.

Why was this decision made?

In 2021, Mental Health America ranked North Carolina 44 out of 51 in access to behavioral care. Of particular concern, North Carolina was the fifth-worst state in the country for youth behavioral health needs, in terms of the prevalence of mental illness and rates of access to care. Additionally, in June 2021, Gov. Cooper identified a historic behavioral health need in North Carolina that has only been compounded by the pandemic.

This partnership allows us the ability to better achieve our mission and to continue leading public health efforts across the state, especially in rural communities. Collaborative efforts like these will strengthen our organization and secure our ability to serve the region for generations to come.

Details

How does this joint venture benefit the community of eastern North Carolina?

Given the profound challenges facing our state in terms of access to quality behavioral health care, especially in rural communities, there is a tremendous need for innovative strategies to address these challenges. This new hospital is designed with those realities in mind. It will add additional beds to our health system for adults, as well as provide the only child and adolescent beds within 75 miles of Greenville.

Through this new partnership, ECU Health is reinforcing its commitment to stopping the stigma against people with mental illness. Prior to the pandemic, nearly one in five North Carolinians experienced a mental illness. In the last two years, data indicates a growing trend of depression and anxiety symptoms.

Mental health issues affect every family and community, and we are committed to talking about mental health, normalizing it and treating it with the latest science and medicine. We are committed to stopping the stigma against people with mental illness or who need behavioral health care services.

When will positions be posted for the new hospital?

Updated 9/9/2022

The posting of positions will occur closer to the spring of 2025, when the hospital is slated to open.

Why was the location next to ECU Health Medical Center chosen?

ECU Health has identified a plot of undeveloped land in the medical district currently owned by the health system – less than a mile from ECU Health Medical Center – as the ideal location for this behavioral health hospital. This proximity to the ECU Health Medical Center will help ensure we can deliver services efficiently and effectively to patients who need them.

How big is the new behavioral health hospital?

Slated to open in Spring 2025, the new hospital will include 144 beds to meet the demand for inpatient psychiatric care in the region. We are still in the preliminary stages of planning and designing the new hospital and we look forward to sharing additional details in the coming months.

Will the new hospital include pediatrics?

Through this partnership, the hospital will include 24 inpatient beds dedicated to serving the mental health needs of children and adolescents – the only child and adolescent beds within 75 miles of Greenville – which will be a significant step forward for behavioral health care in eastern North Carolina. Patients of all ages will have access to the specialized care they need in a carefully designed environment.

What will the new behavioral health hospital be called?

The name of the new hospital will be announced at a future date.

Ask A Question

We’re Committed to Keeping You Informed as We Move Forward.

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