Sanford Bemidji Crisis Center now open

Beltrami County and Sanford Health held the grand opening ceremony of the Sanford Bemidji Crisis Center yesterday.

Patients will be accepted starting Oct. 13.

According to a release, the $6.9 million project was possible through a partnership of Sanford Health, Beltrami County and the state of Minnesota.

The center is the first of its kind to offer adult inpatient hospital psychiatric beds within 90 miles of Bemidji, and the first to feature an Emergency Psychiatric Assessment Treatment and Healing (EmPATH) unit for children, adults and families in the region.

“We are extremely excited to see this project come to completion,” said President and CEO of Sanford Health of Northern Minnesota.

“The care that will be provided here will have a tremendous impact on our community and will fill a huge gap for our patients.”

The new 12,000-sq.-ft. facility is on Hannah Avenue between the main medical center and the Sanford Health PrimeWest Residential Support Center.

Eight inpatient beds are dedicated for adult psychiatric care, and the EmPATH unit can provide outpatient crisis care for children, adults and families.

“For someone who is experiencing a mental or substance use crisis, an ER can be overstimulating and even overwhelming,” said Ashlea McMartin, Director of Sanford Behavioral Health.

“The EmPATH unit and crisis center will provide an environment that is optimal to de-escalate a patietn’s crisis and help get them the tailored care they need right away.”


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!


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