Construction of US $90m Cordilleras Health System project in California, US begins

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Construction of US $90m Cordilleras Health System project in California, US has begun. This is after Skanska signed a contract with San Mateo County to build five new buildings in Redwood City.

The project involves four new Mental Health Rehabilitations Centers (MHRC) containing 16 beds for long-term mental healthcare. Additionally, there will be a new three-story, co-housing building that will support transitional clients.

Construction is expected to take 3 years; from November 2020 to December 2023.

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Cordilleras Health System project

Cordilleras Mental Health Center is located on unincorporated County land at 200 Edmonds Road near Redwood City, CA. The Center houses two separate treatment programs operated by Telecare Corporation for adults with chronic mental illness: a licensed locked 68-bed Mental Health Rehabilitation Center (MHRC) and a licensed 49-bed Adult Residential Facility (ARF).

Cordilleras serves San Mateo County residents, 18 and older, with long histories of mental illness and multiple episodes of acute psychiatric hospitalization. Most consumers are admitted to the Cordilleras locked MHRC beds from San Mateo Medical Center’s psychiatric inpatient unit or another locked facility outside San Mateo County. The MHRC is the highest, most intensive level of care for people with mental illness other than psychiatric inpatient services and state hospitals. All of the residents of the MHRC are conserved, dependent adults, who meet legal criteria for grave disability, and the vast majority have been admitted to the program involuntarily.

Back in 2014, the San Mateo County Public Works Department and the San Mateo County Health System, Behavioral Health and Recovery Services (BHRS) commissioned a feasibility study with the support of the Board of Supervisors to determine the feasibility, including estimated costs, of replacing the existing Cordilleras Mental Health Center, a sixty-two year old San Mateo County-owned 117-bed psychiatric facility, with facilities that meet modern standards of care for seriously mentally ill consumers.

The goal of the project would be to transform Cordilleras, one of the County’s most important resources in the continuum of care for its most vulnerable mentally ill residents, into a center for consumer wellness, rehabilitation and recovery that leverages every aspect of the built and natural environment, the best practices for treatment, and the expertise of providers, family members, consumers and community.