Hwy 11 & Parkway Blvd., Hattiesburg, MS

Project Details:

Hattiesburg Clinic is requesting NMTC allocation to support the construction of a 20,200 square foot building to house its Connections Behavioral Health Center (“Connections” or “CBHC”) program which will double its mental and behavioral health services from 31,000 to 60,000 patient visits per year (the “Project”). The Project’s site consists of a 15-acre parcel in a corridor that experiences underdevelopment and is a focus area of development for the town. The parcel was acquired by the Clinic for the express purpose of developing specialized medical facilities in order to serve the residents of South Mississippi.

In response to growing concerns over the lack of adequate mental and behavioral healthcare, the Hattiesburg Clinic started its Connections Behavioral Health division in 2005. The CBHC currently operates out of a 10,135 SF leased business suite. The Connections division focuses on providing its patients, including senior citizens and children, the needed services to prevent, diagnose, and treat mental, addictive, and emotional disorders. Based on information provided by the Project Sponsor, the Clinic is the sole provider of comprehensive mental and behavioral healthcare in South Mississippi.

The Connections program currently operates out of a suite in another facility. The construction of the new standalone Connections facility will allow the Clinic to nearly double their offerings and accessibility of mental and behavioral health services.

The Project is also a part of an overall master plan of the Clinic to create a medical campus within the low-income community. The Sponsor recently completed construction of a $6.3 million pediatric medical clinic and has since constructed a new $15 million Orthopedic Surgery and Physical Therapy center. The Project will be the next piece of this multi-phase medical development that will add to the overall healthcare amenities provided in a central location. The NMTC allocation will be used exclusively to construct the Connections Behavioral Health Center.

The Project comes as a response to the critical need for behavioral health services in Mississippi which is a state with the largest shortage of healthcare providers leading to trailing medical statistics across the board including the areas of mental and behavioral health. Based on information produced by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) chronicling Mississippi, the percentage of mental health issues among adults was 33.2% in 2016 with over 109,000 adults (5% of adults in Mississippi) being considered “seriously mentally ill”. Of this 109,000, 61.7% did not receive treatment. Additionally, 47% of children who had mental health issues did not receive treatment or proper counseling during the past 12 months.

Distress Criteria

  • Sever Distress Under 2011-2015 Census Data
  • 35% Poverty Rate
  • Annual Median income of 55.7%

Community Impacts

  • 30 FTE jobs created
  • 27 construction jobs created

Community Alignment

The Project is located in a severely distressed census tract experiencing a 35% poverty rate and a median income that is 55.7% of the area median. The project will bring behavioral health services to the site of a medical treatment complex that is currently in process and developed by the Project Sponsor. This will be the 3rd building on site and will be dedicated to behavioral and mental health as a part of the Sponsor’s Connections behavioral health program currently offered off site in a separate, unowned facility. The Project will increase the number of individuals served from 31,000 patients to 60,000 patient visits annually allowing for the prevention and treatment of mental, addictive, and emotional disorders. he Project will create and/or maintain 46 quality full-time jobs immediately upon completion or which the sponsor projects that 59% will be accessible positions. Based on the CDE’s mission of providing subsidized financing to medical facilities which support distressed communities in underserved areas this project appears to directly align with the CDE’s mission.