DUPLIN COUNTY, N.C. (WNCT) Vidant Duplin Hospital will be closing its inpatient behavioral unit in August.
Vidant Officials released the following statement:
“Vidant Health is committed to improving the health and well-being of eastern North Carolina. While keeping the mission at the forefront at all times, it is necessary for the health system to make decisions to ensure we can remain a viable health care provider for the 1.4 million people in our region. Vidant delivers care in one of the most difficult markets in the country with a high burden of disease, underserved population, and a lack of focus in Raleigh and Washington, D.C. on policies that support rural health care, including behavioral health. The challenges of delivering rural health care, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, have taken a significant financial toll on Vidant. The financial impact of COVID-19 on the organization intensified the need to carefully and thoughtfully consider options and make decisions in order to ensure we can deliver upon our mission into the future. As a result of these realities, we will discontinue operating the inpatient Behavioral Health Unit at Vidant Duplin Hospital in mid-to-late August. It is always difficult to make decisions that impact a team member’s employment. Vidant will provide support to the 60 team members affected by this transition through a dedicated Talent Acquisition team who will offer available positions within the Vidant system. Patients will continue to have local access to behavioral health care through existing outpatient services, and the available facilities in eastern North Carolina that offer inpatient behavioral health beds, including Vidant Medical Center and Vidant Roanoke Chowan Hospital. After the transition, patients arriving at the Vidant Duplin Emergency Department in need of Behavioral Health services will be evaluated and then transferred to an appropriate facility, when deemed necessary. Vidant will work closely with patients and their families during this transition to ensure continuity of care. Eastpointe, the County’s Local Management Entity-Managed Care Organization (LME-MCO) remains dedicated to helping individuals who struggle with substance use disorder, mental illness and/or intellectual and developmental disabilities offers direct access to care 24-hours a day at 1-800-913-6109 or online at Eastpointe.net/contact. Vidant is carefully evaluating all services, programs, and operations across the system. The announcement today is one of several we must make in the coming months in order to be a viable, healthy organization for the communities we love and serve. These are necessary decisions to help ensure we can continue to provide the most critical services for eastern North Carolina.”