Health Center Rises

New Garlington Center shaped by community needs

Dana Lynn Barbar | 10/25/2017, 9:56 a.m.
Slated to open this spring, the Garlington Center for Health and Wellness will provide space for mental health and addiction ...
Jeffrey Eisen, chief medical officer at Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare and Joan Jasper from Scott Edwards Architecture tour the construction of the Garlington Center for Health and Wellness, a new all-in-one facility to bring mental health, addiction counseling and physical health services into one location, while also providing affordable housing options.

Construction of a unique coordinated healthcare facility geared toward the African American community and other vulnerable residents is nearing completion. Slated to open this spring, the Garlington Center for Health and Wellness will provide space for mental health and addiction counseling, medical services, and affordable housing.

Cascadia Behavior Health representatives, along with project partners from Colas Construction and Scott Edwards Architecture, gave a hard-hat tour of the property on Thursday for a behind-the-scenes look at the new facility at 3034 N.E. Marin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

The 1.5-acre space will house two buildings. One will be the health center itself, with a clinic, on-site pharmacy, and over 20 rooms for counselors and clinicians to see patients. The other building will be an affordable housing area, with 52 residential units including studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments that patients can apply to stay in. There is also an outdoor courtyard space and plans for a community garden.

This is the first time that Cascadia will implement a fully integrated, team-based health care model at one of their centers, where mental health, wellness, physical health and housing are consolidated into one space.

Health care leaders have come to realize that traditional addiction care only looks at one aspect of a patient’s health needs, and that there are often many other factors that affect a person’s well-being, including other mental health issues, physical health, housing, and even transportation.

Cascadia staff members are excited about the possibility of identifying and incorporating the variety of needs and issues a patient faces into their treatment options.

“When mental health is addressed as a facet of a person’s entire wellbeing, we more often see lasting improvements in that person’s ability to thrive,” said Kalindi Kapadia, director of the Garlington Center. “We are so happy to be working on this, and think it’s going to be great for everybody,” she added.

Derald Walker, Cascadia’s chief executive officer, said he was thrilled that the health provider was part of an effort that “finally breaks down the barrier between behavioral care and primary care."

The center is named after the late Rev. John W. Garlington, a black minister and prominent advocate for civil rights in the Portland community in the late 1970s and early 1980s.