Crews demolished an old building on the campus of Harnett County’s oldest hospital to make way for new growth in January 2019. A groundbreaking for the Good Hope addition was set to be held six weeks later, but for nearly two years the site sat idle with only the occasional tied construction tape fluttering in the wind.
Until this year...
Steel frames now stall over a new concrete floor, breaking through the shadow of a pandemic that stunted its growth. There’s new hope for Good Hope Hospital.
“We’re excited to expand our resources for the community and be able to offer more services as we go forward,” said Matt Bertagnole, Good Hope Hospital’s executive director.
The new building, now under construction, will add 16 inpatient beds to the psychiatric hospital, doubling its size and allowing staff to serve more patients.
“It’s been an ongoing process for about three years now with applying for grants from the state and the Golden Leaf Foundation, (and) Sandhills Center. (They) have all been supporting us,” Bertagnole said. “We finally got a set of plans and a contractor hired last fall and were able to get permitted early this year so now we’re starting to see some progress ...”
He said they hope to have the new building complete in the fourth quarter and open to patients by the end of the year.
“We’re going to be pretty much serving the same population that we do now. We’ll basically just be extending the current services and have more capacity for what we’re already doing,” he added.
Good Hope Hospital was founded in 1913. It closed in 2006 and reopened in 2011 as a 16-bed, free-standing behavioral health hospital. It offers services to adults requiring inpatient care for a variety of concerns, including suicidal behavior, self-injurious behavior, sleep or eating disorders, medication adjustments, mood swings, psychosis and acute depressive episodes.
“We’ve had in-person providers as well as telehealth, which has been very helpful during the pandemic, allowing us to keep a steady flow of services going throughout this whole time,” Bertagnole said. “I think people assume that Good Hope was the hospital that quit operating years ago and don’t realize that we have a fully-functioning psychiatric hospital right here.”
Open doors to certified mental health care providers are hard to find in North Carolina, especially in rural areas.
“We don’t have a whole lot of programs for mental health unless you’re in some of the bigger cities with the bigger hospital systems,” he said. “Good Hope has been a pretty unique situation because it’s a small program and it’s got a real community feel that has been able to provide a great environment for the patients to really be in a place of healing.”
In 2019, the construction project was estimated to cost $4.2 million and create 50 new jobs upon its completion.
Emily Weaver can be reached at email@example.com or at 910-230-2028.