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Strategic Behavioral Health

An architect's rendering of Strategic Behavioral Health's proposed Bettendorf facility from 2017. The company has notified the state of issues that will delay its opening until February 2020, and that the building design will be updated "due to lessons learned in existing operations."

The projected opening date for the new psychiatric hospital in Bettendorf has been pushed back.

The cost also is going up.

Strategic Behavioral Health, the Memphis-based company that won approval last year for a 72-bed facility at 770 Tanglefoot Lane, has told the state it now plans to open in February 2020.

The company updated the State Health Facilities Council of its new projected opening date as part of a request seeking an extension on its Certificate of Need and approval of a cost overrun.

Becky Swift, who manages the state's Certificate of Need program, said that such extensions are routine. The health facilities council approved it unanimously at a meeting last month.

The new projected opening date is about a year later than the company had originally anticipated, although at the time of its groundbreaking in April, Strategic officials said that it expected construction would take 12 to 18 months.

"At the time the groundbreaking was planned it was intended to mark the beginning of construction," the company said in documents submitted to the state Health Facilities Council. However, it said several things delayed building.

They included having to wait for zoning and setback approvals, finalization of the Certificate of Need process and the close of sale of the property, the company said. Strategic also submitted a May letter from its contractor anticipating that site work could last into November, and that the winter months would then lead to a suspension of work.

Strategic also updated its building prototype, saying it has continued to do so "due to lessons learned in existing operations and industry construction and design best practices."

It said the process places an emphasis on patient safety and therapeutic outcomes.

Strategic operates psychiatric hospitals in several states. Earlier this year, a facility in North Carolina was fined for violation of laws aimed at protecting patients from harm, abuse or neglect, according to the Charlotte Observer newspaper.

In January, 10 children broke out of the facility, the newspaper reported.

It's not clear whether any of the change in the building prototype was related to the incident.

The Quad-City Times did not receive responses to emails seeking comment from company officials.

Strategic said the new Bettendorf facility will be larger than initially expected, and it will have additional furniture and safety devices. The company now is estimating the cost of the hospital to be $18.1 million, up from about $15 million a little more than a year ago.

Strategic first proposed the Bettendorf facility in 2015, saying there is a shortage of hospital beds in the Quad-Cities for people with behavioral health issues. Its proposal, though, was held up as the Quad-Cities two largest hospitals objected.

The health facilities council deadlocked on approving the project twice, but ultimately voted to give it the go-ahead in July of 2017.

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