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  • Jeff Burkhead

Medical director hired for new Treatment and Recovery Center

Updated: Jun 29, 2022

Dr. George Thompson has been an active participant in the planning for the new Treatment and Recovery Center (TRC).

Now he is the TRC’s first medical director. Thompson began his duties Nov. 1. Construction of the facility is expected to be completed in spring 2022.

“It’s very exciting to be part of something where there’s a clear vision and collaboration like there has been with this project,” Thompson said. “I’m excited about the opportunity to work with so many wonderful people who are involved with the Treatment and Recovery Center. All of the agencies have come together to really work as partners on this project.”

TRC is part of the Treatment and Recovery Campus of Douglas County. Behavioral Health Partners, Inc., a nonprofit partnership between the Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center and LMH Health, announced Thompson’s hiring. Behavioral Health Partners, Inc., a nonprofit partnership between LMH Health and Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, provides leadership, clinical oversight and operational management of the crisis recovery center. Behavioral Health Partners, Inc. is governed by a nine-member Board of Directors. LMH Health, Bert Nash and the Board of Douglas County Commissioners each appoint three members to the board who may serve three-year terms.

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Thompson join the TRC team,” Bert Nash Center CEO Patrick Schmitz said. “He will be an outstanding leader as well as a wonderful partner with all of the agencies involved with the Treatment and Recovery Center. Dr. Thompson and the entire TRC staff will provide life-changing and life-saving services to those in our community who need it the most.”

The opportunity, the collaboration, the partnerships are all things that attracted Thompson to the TRC medical director position. But more than anything, the community’s need to have a facility that is specifically designed to help people who are in crisis is what motivated Thompson to pursue the medical director’s position.

“The main thing is the value that this project will provide to the community and how much the community wants this,” Thompson said. “Families will have a place where they can bring their loved ones and they will get the evaluation and treatment they need.”

The TRC will be funded through a variety of resources including the quarter-cent sales tax that was approved by voters in November 2018 to improve behavioral health services and facilities in Douglas County.

“The people of Douglas County have said we want this, we need these services,” Thompson said. “I can’t wait for the building to be finished, the staff to be hired, and the doors to open.”

Thompson has been a consulting psychiatrist for LMH Health for the past 10 years. Since January, he has been interim director for the Integrated Crisis Team, a multi-agency team embedded in the emergency department at LMH Health. Also, during the past year, he has been doing traveling physician work, and from 2008 to 2020 he was chief medical officer at KidsTLC in Olathe.

Thompson came to Kansas in 1989 to do psychiatric training at the Menninger Clinic in Topeka. He and his wife have lived in Lawrence for 21 years and raised their family. As a resident of the Pinkney Neighborhood, which the Treatment and Recovery Center is part of, Thompson feels a personal connection with the facility. “Since I also live in the neighborhood, I’ve been driving by and seeing the progress,” Thompson said. “This is both an opportunity and an honor to help lead the clinical aspects of this project so Douglas County residents who are in crisis will have a place to go, and trust that they will receive both compassionate and competent care. Just think about all of the lives that will be served by this Treatment and Recovery Center.”

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