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Fulton County Medical Center, McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania

Fulton County Medical Center (FCMC), located in McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania, is being recognized for the development of an innovative emergency department (ED) mental health distress response.


Nicole Earley, SCM Trainer; Kim Slee, COO; Mike Makosky, CEO; Elizabeth Gotwals, Fulton Behavioral Health; Lanette Johnston, MS, BSN, RN, CHC, Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health; Becky Greenawalt, SCM Trainer; Deborah Shughart, CFO.

Positive Outcomes:

  • Trained staff are being identified as having potential for increased training and responsibility for response to behavioral health patients
  • Staff are engaged in the conversation and have started to think outside of the box of historical care
  • When an inpatient bed is the discharge plan, the average length of stay in the ED has decreased from multiple days to 18 hours

Top Accomplishments:

Staff have participated in Safe Crisis Management (SCM), Crisis Intervention Team and de-escalation training through an external organization. As a result, FCMC has identified a number of initiatives to continue to improve on their ED mental health distress response. These include, refining the process to further integrate SCM into a hospital-based model for the least restrictive alternative for harm reduction, a need to have regular practice sessions to build skills and confidence, and continued staff engagement and buy-in to help reduce mental health stigma.

“Taking care of our patients in the best possible venue with the best quality providers is what we strive to do every day. It is particularly difficult in a rural setting but can be accomplished with a committed group of people.” - Mike Makosky, CEO