San Diego County Moves Forward With New Behavioral Health Hubs

San Diego County is revamping its mental health care system, beginning with a unanimous vote last week to create a network of behavioral health hubs and crisis units where patients can be assessed.

The hubs, which will first debut in North County and central San Diego, are meant to relieve pressure on emergency rooms and county facilities. They will eventually expand to other parts of San Diego.

The price is high. The hub in Hillcrest will cost $115 million alone. The county plans to use Medi-Cal funds to help pay for it. The county’s behavioral health director says it will lead to savings in the long-term, however, by easing the burden on county facilities and preventing mental health crises before they begin.

County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher called it “a reimagining of the entire system.” At his urging, the county is using a Hillcrest property previously eyed for condominiums for a new behavioral health hub.

Read more about the plan and what the county hopes to accomplish at Voice of San Diego