New geriatric mental health facility opens
January 4, 2011
Edmonton’s Villa Caritas offers increased access and privacy, modern amenities
A new geriatric mental health facility opens Jan. 5 in Edmonton, serving seniors with complex mental health and medical needs.
Villa Caritas is a 150-bed facility that will increase access to geriatric mental health services in the city by 44 beds, or 42 per cent.
The three-storey, $51.4-million building features large, private rooms with big windows and private bathrooms, dedicated space for recreation, life skills and rehabilitation services, and common dining and multi-purpose rooms to support interaction and socialization.
“We are pleased to be building on our experience and expertise in serving seniors with mental illness,” says Patrick Dumelie, President and CEO of Covenant Health, the Catholic health care organization that operates the facility.
“Villa Caritas supports best practice in treating patients with mental illness in a community-connected, integrated model of care with health care providers working together with patients, family and community supports.”
Villa Caritas builds on the strengths of the existing Geriatric Mental Health Program which will be moving from Alberta Hospital Edmonton to Villa Caritas. The program has the added benefit of being in close proximity to the Misericordia Community Hospital, enabling integration of services and increased access to specialty services and supports to address patients’ medical needs.
The first patients to move into Villa Caritas will be from the Geriatric Mental Health Program. All 106 patients from the program will be moved in by the end of the month and the additional beds will be opened as soon as possible in 2011.
“Villa Caritas is an important addition to Alberta’s continuum of health services,” says Marianne Stewart, Vice-President, Edmonton Zone, Alberta Health Services.
“It will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our health system by providing timely intervention for the growing number of seniors with mental illness.”
The expanded program will help address pressures in the health care system by providing an option for seniors with complex medical and mental needs waiting in hospitals for appropriate placement or specialized care, as well as for seniors in the community or continuing care who need specialized care and support.
Covenant Health is Canada's largest Catholic health care organization with over 14,000 physicians, employees and volunteers serving in 11 communities across Alberta. A major provider in Alberta's integrated health system, Covenant Health works with Alberta Health Services and community partners to positively influence the health of Albertans through a broad range of programs and services.