A blessing for the community: Hospital to open new behavioral health unit

Published 4:43 am Saturday, August 12, 2017

Our Lady of the Angels Hospital announced the impending opening of its new inpatient Behavioral Health Unit, during a blessing and ribbon cutting Thursday.

The new unit, located on the third floor of the hospital’s main campus in Bogalusa, will replace the existing unit on Memphis Street. The new unit includes 12 private beds with shared “Jack and Jill” restrooms, an expansive day room, group therapy room and nurse’s station.

Nearly 75 city and parish representatives, hospital employees and other community members attended the Thursday morning event. The Rev. Father Daniel Brouillette, parish priest at Annunciation Catholic Church, conducted the blessing.

Rene Ragas, Northshore market president for the Franciscan Missionaries of the Our Lady Health System, welcomed everyone to the ceremony Thursday.

“This is a great time for us to dedicate a new part of our ministry,” he said. “It took a lot of time and prayer, but we made it work. This is another exciting accomplishment for our community.

“Everything that we do is to serve God’s people, and especially those in need. While many organizations are pulling back on mental health resources, we are investing in them.”

Ragas noted that the hospital has seen a number of expansions and improvements in the past three years, and the behavioral health unit is one to add to that list.

“We believe that health is about the mental, and not just the physical,” he said.

Ragas also expressed his thanks to Chief Nursing Officer Ralph Serpas for managing the project, and also stressed the quality of work by Greenleaf Lawson Architects and Kent Design Build.

“We cannot say enough about their expertise and professionalism,” he said.

After the blessing, a ribbon cutting was held, and community members were then invited to tour the new health unit.