Monday 19 August, 2019

Island’s first mental health facility to be built in East End

A long-term residential mental health facility is to be built  on 15-acres of crown land in East End following a release on Wednesday that the Ministry of Health had signed an agreement which officially started the project.

On Monday the ministry signed a contract with Canadian based, Montgomery Sisam Architects Inc and local architectural firm DDL Studio, which will see both groups working together to complete designs and putting together a budget for the construction of the facility.

“It has been a long road to get to this point and I am very happy to be the Minister seeing the plans move forward,” said Minister for Health Dwayne Seymour.

 “I have known Caymanians, including family members, who have had to go overseas for treatment, so I am very excited about getting the facility designed, built and completed,” he added.

The design of the new facility is expected to incorporate an administrative building and seven cottages, each of which will accommodate six patients.

Additional cottages are said to be a part of the plan and will be built as the need arises.  

“It’s absolutely wonderful news to have the contract signed, as we have been working for many years to establish this much-needed facility to care for our mental health patients, who are among the most vulnerable in our community,” said psychiatrist Dr. Marc Lockhart, Chairman of the Mental Health Commission and an integral member of the long-term residential mental health facility steering committee.

“It is absolutely essential that we care for our mental health patients in the appropriate manner, and I am very happy that we have reached this stage of the development,” he added.

Currently there are no long-term residential mental healthcare facility in the Cayman Islands, so patients are sent overseas to Jamaica or the United States for treatment.

While many others who require treatment are left with limited in-island choices as they are unable to obtain visas due to criminal convictions.

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