Senator Collins Visits Aroostook Mental Health Center

U.S. Senator Susan Collins visited Aroostook Mental Health Center (AMHC) to tour the newly renovated Adult Crisis Stabilization Unit (ACSU) and meet with leadership, including AMHC CEO Ellen Bemis. During the visit, Senator Collins also joined the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) Planning Consortium Meeting.

“For nearly 60 years, the staff at Aroostook Mental Health Center have been dedicated to improving the health of rural and underserved communities. The newly renovated Adult Crisis Stabilization Unit will allow individuals with mental health disorders to continue to receive care close to home in a state-of-the-art facility. In addition, AMHC’s leadership in establishing a consortium of law enforcement and local health care providers will be life changing for the thousands of Mainers struggling with addiction,” said Senator Collins. “As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, I will continue to support funding for federal programs such as RCORP that provide community health organizations with the resources they need to expand treatment and prevention programs.”

Last year, Senator Collins announced that AMHC had been awarded a $200,000 grant through RCORP. With this federal funding, AMHC created the Aroostook Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (ACORP). The consortium includes Aroostook Mental Health Services, Aroostook County Sheriff’s Office, Cary Medical Center, Northern Light AR Gould Hospital, Houlton Regional Hospital, Northern Maine Medical Center, and a person in recovery.

In 2020, AMHC purchased the former Prasanna Building in Presque Isle. Following six months of renovations, the agency relocated the AMHC Presque Isle Outpatient Services Office, the ACSU, and administrative staff to the new building. The new building has allowed an increase from five to eight beds and currently provides the only crisis beds for residents of Aroostook, Washington, and Hancock counties.

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