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Touchstone Mental Health to open a new residential treatment program in Fridley

Today, Touchstone Mental Health, Allina Health and Anoka County announced plans that will provide a residential treatment program for people managing mental health conditions near Mercy Hospital – Unity Campus in Fridley. This residential treatment program will serve 16 people daily, with an estimated 85 people served annually, providing 24/7 mental health treatment and short-term housing for up to 90 days.

“For 35 years, Touchstone has provided hope and a path to recovery to people confronting the challenges of mental health conditions,” explained Ellie Skelton, executive director of Touchstone Mental Health. “We appreciate Anoka County’s partnership and Allina Health’s commitment to modern mental health strategies for this community.”

Touchstone was selected by Anoka County to provide Intensive Residential Treatment Services (IRTS) for adult residents with mental health conditions. The IRTS program will provide short-term mental health support for people transitioning from hospitals, like the Unity campus mental health unit, and those requiring stabilization in order to prevent hospitalization. Staff will include a full-time on-site treatment director, mental health professionals, nurses, practitioners, counselors and peer specialists.

“Residential treatment programs are an important strategy for helping people manage complex mental health needs.” explained Ruth Engelstad, Chair of the Anoka County Adult Mental Health Advisory Committee. “Touchstone will be able to provide the professional level of support needed to transition individuals through their care, just like what is done for people with knee and hip replacements.”

Program services will include illness management and recovery, individual counseling, therapeutic groups, medication management, care coordination, leisure and recreation activities and independent living skills education. Integrated treatment will be provided for those who have mental health issues along with substance abuse. Every person leaving treatment receives discharge planning and assistance in finding housing and community services to meet their needs.

“Residential treatment programs like this help us fulfill our promise of ‘right care at the right place.’  Currently patients who experience longer hospital stays, and those waiting in emergency rooms for a bed, would benefit from having this level of service,” according to Dr. Paul Goering, vice president of mental health and addiction services at Allina Health.

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