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Old Prineville hospital to house mental health services


The former Pioneer Memorial Hospital building in Prineville getting a second chance at life. The lights are coming back on at the hospital, which closed a year ago.

Lutheran Community Services Northwest has been providing mental health services for Crook County for 30 years, and now it’s expanding into that building.

“The primary purpose of this facility would be locating all of our county mental services in one roof,” Scott Willard, the nonprofit’s Central Oregon area director, said Wednesday.

The board of the former hospital accepted the nonprofit human services agency’s $2 million bid. The organization will use a portion of the east side of the hospital and lease out other sections to health providers.

“What we’re looking for is the potential to find an organization that would want to have a memory-care facility or a rehab center to be able to lease a part of the building that is currently the old hospital rooms,” he said.

County Commissioner Ken Fahlgren told NewsChannel 21 the county decided not to turn the old hospital building into a jail because of the location.

Lutheran Community Services Northwest is also looking at moving its IT department into the Prineville site.

Fahlgren said this good news could bring more jobs to the county.

“The benefit to the community might also be this building might have a new life, and it’s important to help them and support them in what might be an alignment of a lot services in one location, which will really help the community,” Fahlgren said.

Officials hope to have staff and start offering services in the new building by the end of February.

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