General News

Geriatric behavioral health at MCCH recognizes mental health awareness week

October 8, 2020

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The Geriatric Behavioral Health Unit at Murray-Calloway County Hospital  (MCCH) joins with NAMI to recognize Mental Health Awareness Week.  This year we’ve seen the numbers of Americans impacted by mental health conditions on the rise as a result of the pandemic and more people than ever need help. In honor of Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW) on Oct. 4-10, 2020, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and participants across the country are raising awareness and educating about mental illness warning signs and symptoms.

This year’s theme for MIAW is “What People with Mental Illness Want You to Know.” Too often, people with mental illness are marginalized, isolated and discriminated against because their conditions are misunderstood by the general public. 

One in five adults experience mental illness every year. Although many people today understand that mental illness is a medical condition, there are still many stigmatizing misconceptions and stereotypes at large. By amplifying the voices of people with lived experience during MIAW, NAMI hopes to increase awareness, empathy and compassion for those with mental illness.

The Geriatric Behavioral Health Unit at Murray-Calloway County Hospital works with variations of those with a mental illness. It is an inpatient geriatric-psychiatric program for short-term care. It is a hospital-based program for individuals 55+ who are experiencing emotional or behavioral problems. The 12-bed inpatient unit is on the 2nd Floor of the North Towers and was specially designed to meet the needs of geriatric-psychiatric patients with a separate dining area, a recreational therapy room, and comfortable patient rooms. The program provides compassionate, short-term, comprehensive care for older patients in a secure, caring setting.

The unit admits patients who are 55 years of age or older and whose primary diagnosis is psychiatric. Signs and symptoms that may indicated treatment is needed include:

  • Major Depression
  • Psychotic episodes
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts
  • Mood instability
  • Mania
  • Verbal or physical aggression
  • Hallucinations
  • Increased confusion
  • Behavioral issues related to dementia
  • Delusions or paranoia

Features of the behavioral health unit include:
• Nurses’ station
• Recreational therapy room
• Group and community dining area
• Quiet room

Learn more about Mental Illness Awareness Week and NAMI offers information about mental illness conditions, symptoms and treatment through the NAMI HelpLine at 800-950-NAMI (6264).

For more information about the Geriatric Behavioral Health Unit at MCCH, call 270.762.1220.

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