Local Hospital Adapting to Meet Needs

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Meridian, Miss. The East Mississippi State Hospital has been a staple in this area for quite some time, with the first building being built in 1882. It was originally built as a confederate veterans nursing home, but over the years has become one of 4 state mental hospitals under the department of mental health. The hospital has but one mission, to serve those in need.

"The mission statement of East Mississippi State Hospital is to provide behavioral health, chemical dependency, and nursing home services in a caring and compassionate environment," Ann Glazer, an employee of East Mississippi State Hospital, says. "So all of our efforts are geared to meet that challenge"

The hospital serves 11 counties in East Mississippi. While it is a mental health institution, it does more than just take care of the mentally ill. Therefore, the hospital is constantly changing to meet those needs.

"We serve not only adult psychiatric population, but we also serve an adolescent population," Larry McKnight, the CAO of East Mississippi State Hospital, says. "We also have a community services division, and we also have a nursing home division, where we have 240 beds."

The hospital is hoping to get accreditation from a joint commission that accredits health care programs.