Radford to get mental health assessment center

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RADFORD (WSLS) - There is a new resource coming to the New River Valley for people in a mental health crisis.

Radford will soon be home to a crisis intervention team assessment center.

This will be a place where police officers bring someone in a mental health emergency to be assessed by a healthcare professional. From there, it will be determined if hospitalization is required.

There will be five new Radford sheriff's deputies hired to staff the facility, which will double that department's current size.

Once the center opens, police officers can drop patients off, then immediately return to their patrol duties. This is expected to reduce the time officers must spend on a mental health assessment call from eight hours to about 45 minutes.

The goal is to have this assessment center up and running in the next several months.