Democrats, Republicans Agree on Bill to Keep Mental Health Facilities Open

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DES MOINES, Iowa — Democrats and Republicans have officially agreed to support legislation that is set to keep two mental health facilities open, according to an Iowa Senate news release.

“Iowa families already often struggle to find high quality, accessible, affordable mental health care,” Senator Rich Taylor said.  “Because reducing access to intensive mental health services would only make things worse, we’ve worked out a bipartisan agreement.”

Under the agreement, the Mount Pleasant mental health institute will provide adult acute psychiatric care and substance abuse in-patient care.

In addition, the bill provides funding for the Clarinda facility to remain open until the middle of December. After that, the facility will transition to private care.

The Department of Human Services will look for a contractor that can provide nursing services for people who are sexually aggressive or combative due to a mental illness.

The private contractor will also be required to give hiring preference to the current Clarinda employees.

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