Skip to main content

Fairview's hospital closures raise mental health concerns

Fairview Health Services' closure of two hospitals will mean fewer inpatient mental health beds in the area.
bethesda hospital

Fairview Health Services is closing two of its hospitals, but mental health advocates have raised concerns over the possible consequences.

Fairview recently announced a series of cuts, including 900 positions across its system. Fairview will also close St. Joseph’s and Bethesda hospitals in St. Paul. Bethesda, which currently solely serves COVID-19 patients, will become a winter shelter for the local homeless population, pending approval from Ramsey County.

St. Joseph’s will be “reimagined” as a community wellness hub in coming years, with 100 mental health beds remaining open through 2021, Fairview said. Fairview also pointed out the hospital’s close proximity to other facilities.

But the closures will mean fewer mental health beds in the area. Fairview Southdale will also lose 18 inpatient psychiatric beds. But a new emergency mental health unit will be added to Southdale, according to the Star Tribune.

NAMI Minnesota, a nonprofit that works with people with mental illness, said in a statement the loss of these beds will negatively impact those that require inpatient care, not just emergency treatment.

“While Fairview has stated that it’s the largest mental health provider in the Midwest, this is not a reason to decrease access to mental health treatment at a time when the pandemic has increased the need for mental health care,” a release from NAMI reads.

“It doesn’t matter how big a provider you are, closing beds decreases access. NAMI Minnesota urges community members to speak up against these closures."

Next Up

Brave New Comedy Workshop in downtown Minneapolis.

Brave New Workshop cancels shows due to COVID-19 cases

The shows were scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre.

Austin Retterath

Body of missing U of M student found in Mississippi River

Austin Retterath was last seen alive in the morning hours of May 8.

"Love" mural seen in St. Paul.

Summer mural events to bring together community, shine light on MN artists

The 2022 Chroma Zone Mural & Art Festival will take place this weekend in St. Paul's Creative Enterprise Zone, with ensuing events happening this summer.

14869-Manitou-Road-NE-Prior-Lake-MN-55372-6110268-image37

Gallery: Remodeled lakeside home in Prior Lake on market for $2.8M

It offers privacy at the end of a dead-end road fronting onto Lower Prior Lake.

golden valley police department

Carjacking outside ice arena in Golden Valley under investigation

Golden Valley PD confirmed it received a report of a carjacking Monday evening.

Growlers

Signs that MN Legislature could move to loosen liquor laws

A provision was approved by a legislature committee on Thursday but still awaits a final decision from the House and Senate.

US Bank Stadium

U.S. Bank Stadium looking to hire 400 part-time workers

A hiring fair will be held for the positions.

Screen Shot 2022-05-20 at 8.55.56 AM

Officials looking for man last seen leaving Hudson home

David Mckay, 67, was last seen in Hudson Thursday morning.

covid

'Hyper-contagious' BA.4, BA.5 COVID variants confirmed in MN

Omicron continues to evolve into a more transmissible virus.

covid-19, coronavirus

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Friday, May 20

The latest data shows there are 442 people with COVID hospitalized in Minnesota.

Related

bethesda hospital

Fairview Health Services to cut 900 jobs, close Bethesda Hospital

It's also planning to reduce it services at St. Joseph's Hospital.

St. Joseph's

Mental health group raises alarm over possible closure of St. Paul hospital

The advocacy group is opposing any attempts to shut down the hospital.

cambia hills east bethal

Mental health treatment facility for teens announces sudden closure

Cambia Hills of East Bethel shared the news of its abrupt closure this week.

Child mental health counseling

As pandemic continues, so do efforts to improve child mental health access

Children's Minnesota has announced it will open its first inpatient mental health facility for under 18s.

Fairview Health Hiawatha

Fairview to close 16 clinics, 5 pharmacies as part of budget cuts

It comes as the healthcare provider prepares to cut 900 jobs and shut down Bethesda Hospital.

Future of Willmar mental health facility in doubt

The West Central Tribune reports the facility opened as one of the best mental health hospitals in the state. But now hospital beds aren't being filled, prompting the closure talks.

Screen Shot 2021-06-13 at 5.56.00 PM

Charges: Man with mental health issues ran over neighbor in Brooklyn Park

The man charged with murder was civilly committed in 2019.