Lyster opens new behavioral health clinic
Col. James Laterza, commander, LAHC; Leslie George, behavioral health clinic staff member; and Dr. Barry Funkhouser, chief, behavioral health clinic, cut the ribbon on the new behavioral health clinic Aug. 22.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. (August 29, 2013) -- More than 40 senior leaders from Fort Rucker joined Lyster Army Health Clinic Aug. 22 in a ceremony to commemorate the opening of the new behavioral health clinic.

The behavioral health clinic was given priority as the first project in a long list of upgrades at LAHC because of the pressing behavioral health needs of Soldiers.

At twice its original size, the $2.5 million upgrade allows for new modalities, such as group therapy, tele-behavioral health and a bio-feedback lab.

"Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and their Families are beginning to collectively understand that the care they receive by behavioral health is as important as the care they may receive in Family medicine, flight medicine or any type of specialty care," said Col. James Laterza, commander of LAHC.

The new facility will continue to eliminate stigma about seeking care for behavioral health issues and the size of the new clinic will allow staff to develop new offerings for Fort Rucker's Soldiers, Laterza said.

Since 2007, the Army grew the force of behavioral health professionals by 90 percent, adding nearly 1,700 professionals to behavioral health teams. The cost of that expanded effort, programs and facilities nears $400 million on an annual basis. Plans call for the uniformed behavioral health provider force to grow by 1,000 personnel by fiscal year 2017.

"Through the commitment of the AMEDD and that of the Army, it is clear that the behavioral health needs of our patients are being met and that their command teams understand the brain is an organ that sometimes needs a tune up," Laterza said.

The clinic is now located near the front of the building and shares an entrance with MRI.

Page last updated Thu August 29th, 2013 at 13:33