Reshaping For Medicine

Work is underway to transform the former Quality Market site in North Warren into a “medical mall” for those recovering from mental illness.

Beacon Light Behavioral Health Systems is renovating the former grocery store to accommodate a mental health recovery center, according to material provided by Director of Communications John Policastro, and hopes to complete the project this year.

Beacon Light purchased the site on Market Street Ext. in December 2011 with the goal of providing a variety of mental health services to the area under one roof.

“We picked this site primarily because of its centralized location and easy access to bus routes and transportation,” Beacon Light President and CEO Richard Seager said.

The site encompasses nearly an acre of indoor space and is on a Transit Authority of Warren County bus route.

According to Policastro, once completed, the site will host “a full complement of services for adults working to rebuild their lives after the devastating effects of mental illness.”

Beacon Light will tentatively host services at the site including psychiatrists, therapists, peer support specialists and “evidence-based programs” like a decision support center. The decision support center is, “a computerized approach to decision making that gives clients an active role in managing their medications and daily goals.”

Warren General Hospital has signed onto the project as well. The hospital, according to Policastro, has signed an agreement to open a primary care practice adjacent to the new center.

“While the service offered by Beacon Light and the physician services of the hospital will be separate and distinct,” Warren General CEO John Papalia said last September, “our co-location provides easy access to medical resources for our entire community.”

“As the need for medical care is equally important in the journey toward mental health recovery, the combination of primary care and mental health care is a tremendous asset for the community,” Policastro said.

Work on the project is weather-dependent and, Policastro noted, exterior work is being done “when weather permits” while interior work is being done, “as necessary.”

“We are heavily invested in the Warren community and are committing extensive financial resources in the creation of this program,” Seager said. “There is a documented need for adult recovery services and we are dedicated to providing them in the most accessible, convenient and appropriate way possible.”