CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A non-profit organization in Cambria County is helping residents experiencing a mental health crisis get immediate help through the construction of a new walk-in Crisis Center.

Behavioral Health of Cambria County (BHoCC) announced during a press conference Friday the center will be constructed in the Central Park Complex on Franklin Street and offer individuals and families real-time intervention and support. Cambria County Behavioral Health/Intellectual Disabilities (BHID) Administrator Tracy Selak says the Walk-in Crisis Program that will be offered by the center is a big win for the community.

“A Walk-in Crisis Center in Cambria County has been a vision of many stakeholders within the community including mental health providers, local law enforcement and first responders, 911 dispatchers, the local hospitals and medical provider system, and most importantly individuals living with mental illness,” Selak said. “By diverting individuals to outpatient community supports, we lessen the strain on an already overburdened emergency medicine system, lower the costs that are associated with higher levels of care, and most importantly keep individuals connected in their communities and engaged with their natural supports.”

Current crisis provider Cambria Reach or Center for Community Resources (CCR) will reportedly be implementing the program as an expansion of its crisis services offered in the county. CCR Program Manager Jim Redmond says the new program was collaborated with other community providers to bring to the area.

“We have been working with BHoCC; BHID; and Magellan Healthcare for some time to bring this service here,” Redmond said. “I know that it is a much-needed program and will be utilized to a great extent in our community.”

During the press conference, Cambria County President Commissioner Tom Chernisky thanked Behavioral Health of Cambria County and mental health providers for their efforts in bringing the center to the county.

“The crisis center will keep Cambria County residents connected to our community,” Chernisky said. “The expansion of crisis services allows residents to receive immediate support and services.”

Construction on the walk-in Crisis Center is expected to be completed in Spring 2022. More information about mental health services can be found on the BHoCC website.

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