New Northwood Facility

Northwood Children's Services Opens New Psychiatric Facility

Duluth, Minn.-The first residential psychiatric facility for children in Minnesota has opened in Duluth, and is breaking new ground as the first of its kind in the state.

While the building has been open to patients since June 15, Northwood Children’s Services formally introduced the building and its amenities on Friday.

The building’s softly colorful walls, cozy–looking rooms and large open common areas fit neatly in with the tranquil nature surrounding the campus.

The facility is designed for more intense care for ages five to 21. With ’round the clock nursing and assistance, they say it gives children a specific safe haven to withdraw to for mental health care, rather than being dropped into a hospital.

“The hard thing was trying to find a spot for kids who had this need because the only place they could go would be the hospital to receive the level of service that they needed,” said Emily Piper, Minnesota Commissioner of Human Services. “Which was too intense, you don’t want kids in hospitals when they don’t need to be in hospitals.”

A number of amenities are available for children to enjoy including two types of ropes courses, teaming up for sports on their many fields, hobnobbing and picking eggs with chickens, and gardening with plants they name themselves.

Despite all the reasons one may want to stay, this higher intensity care is shorter, accommodating conditions such as trauma, abuse, ADHD, and PTSD, among others.

“I want to provide the best service that we can so, again, we can get them returned to their homes to their schools to their communities as quickly and as successfully as possible.” said Northwood President Richard Wolleat.

According to Northwood, their goal with the assortment of amenities and activities is to make this facility not an institution, but a comfortable, caring space.

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