Cleveland, OH,
13:54 PM

MetroHealth's Cleveland Heights Expansion Moves Forward After City Council Approval

Cleveland Heights

Work will begin soon on the behavioral health expansion at Cleveland Heights Medical Center after the Cleveland Heights City Council approved MetroHealth’s plan Wednesday night.

This project, slated to open in the fall of 2022, will fill a vital community need by dramatically increasing the number of inpatient behavioral health and addiction beds in the community.

The $42 million, three-story addition to the medical center at Severance Circle will mean 110 new treatment beds and 96,000 square feet of new space for care. The facility will serve adolescents, adults and elders suffering from drug and alcohol addiction and behavioral health issues. The facility will include a psychiatric urgent care center as part of the Emergency Department and high-acuity unit for patients requiring specialized care.

The new behavioral health facility is expected to serve 5,000 patients a year and create 225 jobs when it is fully up and running. The new payroll will be approximately $15 million, generating an additional $340,000 a year in payroll taxes for the city of Cleveland Heights.

Council approved the project on 5-1 vote. Earlier this month, it won approval from the city’s Planning Commission, Architectural Review Board and Board of Control.

The behavioral health expansion will significantly reduce Cuyahoga County’s critical shortage of care and treatment capacity. In 2019, nearly half of the residents who required behavioral health inpatient care received it outside of Cuyahoga County. National guidelines reveal the county has 220 fewer beds than what is needed to adequately serve the needs of local patients.

“By making this critical investment at our Cleveland Heights campus, MetroHealth will be able to address one of our community’s biggest problems – the shortage of beds for acute mental health and addiction disease treatment. This expansion will enable us to give more patients the care they deserve, save lives and make our neighborhoods safer,” said MetroHealth President CEO Akram Boutros, MD. “We appreciate the support we have received from city leaders and residents of Cleveland Heights, and we will continue to work with them to build and run what I promise will be an outstanding asset for the city and all the people of Cuyahoga County.”

Mental illness affects an estimated 260,000 people in Cuyahoga County. More than 5,100 people have died of drug overdoses in the county since 2010.

“This opportunity will provide much-needed services to our community while also improving our local economy,” said Jason Stein, President of City Council. “MetroHealth has been a good community partner and we are pleased that they decided to invest in Cleveland Heights. They have acted responsibly by seeking out and holding group and individual conversations with neighbors and concerned residents.”

MetroHealth has made a significant commitment to enhance the landscaping, plantings, and tree coverage to “green up” the entire facility and respond to neighbors’ and the general public’s concerns about safety, noise, and the natural environment.

“This commitment and community input led to our belief that this project is consistent with the goals and objectives of the Severance Town Center District, and this significant investment in the District could help attract future investment at Severance Circle,” Stein said.

The expansion will be in addition to the existing hospital of 12 beds that offers family medicine, colon screenings, an emergency department, mammography services and sports medicine, as well as a regional dispatch center.

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About The MetroHealth System

Founded in 1837, MetroHealth is leading the way to a healthier you and a healthier community through service, teaching, discovery, and teamwork. Cuyahoga County’s public, safety-net hospital system, MetroHealth meets people where they are, providing care through five hospitals, four emergency departments and more than 20 health centers. Each day, our nearly 9,000 employees focus on providing our community with equitable healthcare — through patient-focused research, access to care, and support services — that seeks to eradicate health disparities rooted in systematic barriers. For more information, visit