City progresses toward opening of Missouri’s first Assessment and Treatment Center

Northeast News
March 25, 2016

KANSAS CITY, Missouri — A mental health treatment center inches closer to opening in the Historic Northeast.

Kansas City officials have announced that progress on its public-private partnership to launch the new Kansas City Assessment and Treatment Center (KC-ATC), an innovative mental-health and substance use triage facility, will allow the center to open this summer. The treatment center, the first of its kind in Missouri, is modeled after similar centers that have shown success in communities throughout the nation. The center will be located at 2600 E. 12th St., a building owned by the Missouri Department of Mental Health and being leased and renovated by the city.

Earlier this week, city officials announced selection of ReDiscover for the administration and operation of services at the center. ReDiscover was selected through the city’s Request for Qualifications process.  The KC-ATC partners include the Missouri Department of Mental Health, the Missouri Hospital Association, and the City through the involvement of its Municipal Court and Police and Fire Departments. Ascension Health is providing $20 million over the next 10 years to the center. Area hospitals—HCA Midwest Health, Truman Medical Center, Saint Luke’s Health System, North Kansas City Hospital, Prime Health, and Liberty Hospital—will contribute $1 million a year for two years.

In a press release, Municipal Court Judge Joseph Locascio said too often, individuals who suffer from behavioral health ailments are repeatedly arrested and brought to hospital emergency departments or jails. This center will end that trend.

“The Kansas City Assessment and Treatment Center is a new model of care that will help break this cycle by providing treatment and resources that can improve the lives of our residents,” Locascio said.

The Missouri Hospital Association reports that from 2012 through 2014, area hospitals experienced more than 8,000 visits annually from patients with substance use disorders, and 9,000 visits from those with serious mental illness, but no other life-threatening illness. Some went to emergency rooms as many as 100 times. In the same press release, Mayor Pro Tem Scott Wagner noted Kansas City is proud to be the home of the first center like this in Missouri and is delighted to have ReDiscover as the lead for this ground-breaking project.”

“This is a complete system change for emergency responders, hospitals, the courts and the mental health and substance use treatment systems. This is not just another facility,” Wagner said.

The KC-ATC is an improved way to provide services to these individuals. The KC-ATC will stabilize and refer them for treatment and other services within 23 hours or less. The KC-ATC will be open to law enforcement and hospital referrals only and will not take walk-ins.

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