Texas Governor Greg Abbott has revealed plans for seven new state hospital projects, aimed at enhancing inpatient psychiatric services.

These Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) projects will be funded by a $1.5bn package that was approved by lawmakers in 2023.

The largest investment of $573m is designated for the construction of Terrell State Hospital, which will be a 250-bed replacement facility.

North Texas State Hospital in Wichita Falls is also on the list, with plans to build a 200-bed replacement hospital backed by $452m in funding.

The state’s commitment to mental health extends to the Panhandle region, where $159m will be used to build the Panhandle State Hospital, a new facility with a 75-patient capacity in a non-maximum-security unit.

In addition, $121m will be allocated for building another new state hospital, Lubbock Psychiatric Center, featuring a 50-bed maximum-security unit.

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Another $120m project will be used to add a 50-bed maximum-security unit at Rio Grande State Center in Harlingen while $50m will be used for planning and land acquisition to expand El Paso Psychiatric Center, with the addition of 50 non-maximum-security beds.

In addition, $15m will also be invested to introduce a 40-bed maximum-security unit at San Antonio State Hospital.

These projects are currently in different planning and design phases, with construction on some expected to commence later this year.

Since 2017, Governor Abbott and the Texas Legislature have channelled $2.5bn into capital projects to modernise and expand access to inpatient psychiatric care across the state.

The HHSC operates nine state hospitals and a residential treatment centre for youths, providing vital services to individuals with civil and forensic commitments.

Governor Abbott emphasised the state’s dedication to mental health, stating, “Texas continues working to increase access to critical behavioral health treatments for Texans in every corner of our state. Last year, I signed a law to provide crucial funding to expand and build new, modern mental health facilities throughout Texas.

“These new state hospital projects will help ensure that Texans experiencing a mental health issue have access to mental health professionals and high-quality treatments to address their needs.”