Aurora hospital seeing spike in mental health patients during holidays

Problem Solvers
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AURORA, Colo. -- There's a real need for mental health programs and institutions.

The Medical Center of Aurora turns away hundreds of patients every month because they don't have the capacity to help everyone.

“Our volume has increased more or less near ten fold over the last few months," Jeff Johnson with The Medical Center of Aurora said. “We see a big increase in demand for services around the holiday time.”

The facility has both inpatient and outpatient services. In the month of October, the hospital was forced to turn away 481 patients. In November, 318 people were turned away.

Johnson says a lot of things contribute to the seasonal spike including memories, expectations and family stress.

One patient said, “During the holidays it’s really hard because I’ve had a lot of really broken relationships with my family.”

One of the patients at The Medical Center of Aurora says she can attest to the trend of more stress this time of year.

“I’ve been here a couple times doing their outpatient program and I’ve noticed that the groups have gone from smaller to much larger so I can see that there’s a real need especially during the holidays," the patient said.

It's not just the holidays where the numbers soar. The Problem Solvers found on average, the hospital turns away about 400 patients a month.

“We just don’t have the volume to serve all the individuals that are needing our care and our services especially around the holiday time," Johnson said.

The Medical Center of Aurora will never turn anyone away without helping them find another facility. This particular hospital is looking to add more than 30 beds in 2019.

If you or anyone you know needs help you can call the 24-hour hotline at 844-556-2012.

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