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Mental Health Center holds ribbon-cutting

New facility sits off Eastern Boulevard

New facility sits off Eastern Boulevard

February 28, 2003|by JANET HEIM

The Mental Health Center's new facility off Eastern Boulevard in Hagerstown was officially opened Tuesday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by many local county and business leaders, volunteers and employees.

"We moved in in early February and have been going great guns since then," said Mark Lannon, executive director of the Mental Health Center.

The center, a private and independent, not-for-profit community mental health center, has been operating in Washington County for 10 years. It has grown significantly, from five employees five years ago to a work force of more than 130 employees now, Lannon said.

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Licensed by the state of Maryland, the Mental Health Center serves more than 1,350 people of all ages in the Washington County area. It has outreach into the schools as well as for seniors through the Commission on Aging. Lannon sees the potential to better serve the senior population, as well as working in the areas of domestice violence and addictions.

The services offered by the Mental Health Center include outpatient services with a staff of licensed psychiatrists, social workers, professional counselors, direct care workers and nurses. Specialized services offered by the center include adult foster care, therapeutic foster care, employee assistance consulting and training and school counseling. The organization also owns and manages a program in Garrett County.

The new building totals 27,000 square feet with construction completed in less than a year. Prior to moving into the new building, the services of the Mental Health Center were housed in three separate Hagerstown-area facilities. "This centralized new building has been a long awaited and necessary project," Lannon said.

The project created more than 100 contracting jobs during construction.

"This project shows a community commitment to healthy citizens of Washington County," said Tom Riford, chairman of the business and community development committee for the Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce.

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