POCATELLO – About four years ago Idaho Falls opened its own crisis center. Following its success, the idea of a Pocatello center became more realistic.
Now, that idea is becoming reality.
“We have heard that we are not opening soon enough. We’ve talked to the police department, the hospital, and everybody is asking ‘when are you opening? We need this now,'” said Matt Hardin, executive director of the center.
The South East Idaho Behavioral Crisis Center will open its doors to patients on April 15.
The newly renovated space owned by the Portneuf Health Trust at their city campus building will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist people with mental health or substance issues.
And the proximity to the Pocatello Police Department is something Hardin says will be vital in the early stages.
“We’ve been working on some of those logistical pieces. Who do we call? When do we call? Who can they bring in? Who do we take? And all those things. We, I think, have a really good working communication and a working relationship with them,” said Hardin.
Once those seeking treatment get past the secured entrance, the center provides patients with a common area, showers, dorm rooms separated by gender, as well as an area for medical evaluation on top of the treatment they’ll be receiving.
And as they open their doors, the goal early on is to connect with the community and develop stronger relationships with law enforcement and Portneuf Medical Center.
But ultimately, the focus is on that first person who steps through their doors.
“We’re looking forward to just getting that first client in, and really putting all of this hard work together in order to get somebody in, get them the help they need, and getting them back out into the community,” said Hardin.
The center is located at 1007 North Seventh Avenue.
This story was first published by KPVI. It is used here with permission.