Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

Fresno County is moving forward with a plan to reopen a crisis center for mental health patients. The county closed the center in 2009 due to budget cuts. That resulted in patients being sent to area emergency rooms.

Hospitals say they aren’t well equipped to handle those patients. The new crisis stabilization service will be run by a private contractor, Exodus Health, at the county’s former facility on Kings Canyon Road.

The four year contract with Exodus Health to provide the services for Fresno County is for around $16 million.

This week on Valley Edition we talk about the challenges of providing health care in the Valley's rural communities. We'll hear a special report about a Reedley hospital that has recently emerged from bankruptcy, and talk with Assembly Member Linda Halderman, who is a physician, about the efforts to reform the state's Medi-Cal program. We'll also learn more about Fresno Unified's new graduation task force and find out what this commission will do to help stem the wave of dropouts that has been a major source of concern in the district. 

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

When we get sick, this is what most of us want to see a doctor.That’s what the people of the town of Reedley wanted when they voted to establish the Sierra Kings Health Care District. They taxed themselves and sold bonds to build their own hospital. “What individuals felt is that they could really not for their own health care travel 35 minutes to Fresno or Visalia for major health care,” says Kathy Omachi.