State report recommends transformation of Catawba Hospital

Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 7:16 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - Virginia’s Secretary of Health and Human Resources has delivered a final report that recommends a major transformation of Catawba Hospital and the creation of a state-of-the-art campus for substance abuse treatment and recovery.

The latest report follows preliminary findings released last month. It includes detailed recommendations and cost estimates between $147 million and $240 million.

“It’s great to see that this report is validating the need that we have,” said Del. Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke). “We clearly need more residential treatment beds, more support for substance use disorder. And this kind of investment will be critical for this region.”

The report documents the need for services for patients who have mental health issues such as depression and substance use disorders. And it says the Catawba Hospital campus has the space to expand.

The report identifies three options that include renovations of existing buildings and new construction.

Rasoul has introduced legislation and a budget amendment.

“What I put forward is the $147 million option, which is the lesser expensive of the three, but to say we just need some capacity here,” Rasoul told WDBJ7. “We need residential treatment beds. Families are suffering with regard to substance use disorder. And this will allow us to not only have the treatment beds, but to have the outpatient therapy that so many families need.”

“These are the kinds of investments we should have been making for the last 20 years, and now is the time to do it,” Rasoul said.

The legislation will be coming up in committee soon. Rasoul said he is hoping to win bipartisan support for his bill and budget amendment. And he’s encouraging people in western Virginia who recognize the need and support the project to let their lawmakers know how they feel.

To read the full report, click on the following link: