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Excelsior to treat patients under Ricky’s Law

Health and Wellness

July 2nd, 2020

Spokane’s Excelsior Youth Center is now prepared to treat minors who have been placed in inpatient treatment involuntarily for behavioral health and addiction issues.

So far, the North Spokane organization is the only Safe Withdrawal Management and Stabilization facility in the state ready to accept patients under Washington’s Involuntary Treatment Act. 

Also known as Ricky’s Law, the act amends previous legislation to add substance use disorders to the reasons for placing someone in involuntary treatment. If a health care professional finds that someone dealing with a substance use disorder or behavioral health issues is likely to harm themselves or others, or if substance use disorder causes the patient to be disabled, the patient can be involuntarily committed. 

Excelsior CEO Andrew Hill says the organization has eight beds designated for minors who are undergoing withdrawal from drugs or who are struggling with alcoholism or mental illness. The beds are in Excelsior’s new Integrated Care Center, located on its campus at 3754 W. Indian Trail Road. 

Construction of the $6.3 million building was finished by April, but because of restrictions put in place to stop the spread of COVID-19, Excelsior was unable to open the secure facility until last week.

“It’s the first children’s inpatient facility that was designed using trauma-informed research and architectural design,” Hill claims.

The facility was designed to operate four different programs independently of each other, Hill says, so that Excelsior can provide help for minors who are struggling with different problems under the same roof. 

Excelsior hired 45 full-time and about 30 part-time employees to staff the Integrated Care Center, Hill says, including physicians, registered nurses, an executive director, population-specific care coordinators, and others. Excelsior has 200 total employees throughout its four subsidiaries, which include the Integrated Care Center, Family Care Spokane, Excelsior Holistic Schools, and Excelsior Wellness Center.

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