Central Ohio Mental Health History
Central Ohio Mental Health opened in its first office located on William St. in Delaware in September of 1956 through the efforts of the Delaware County Mental Health Association. The organization began as a means of educating the public about mental and emotional problems while providing treatment to Delaware, Union and Morrow County residents. The organization was funded through a combination of state and local funds from Delaware, Union and Morrow Counties.
Central Ohio Mental Health focused primarily on clinical treatment in its early years. Throughout the first 20 years of the organization, mental health continued to evolve and gain acceptance as an important community issue. The organization reacted to the continued increase in needed services by focusing its efforts on broader community involvement. The organization began partnering with local hospitals and other health organizations; taking on such roles as pre-screeners prior to hospitalization, support staff for residents having difficulty adjusting to the community, and group counselors targeting a variety of mental health issues. In February of 1970, satellite offices opened in Morrow County to increase the scope of services. By 1975, Central Ohio Mental Health was managing 1,500 cases annually.
Since 1975, Central Ohio Mental Health has continued to expand its presence in the community. The organization now maintains offices in four locations encompassing five buildings throughout Delaware and Morrow Counties. Central Ohio Mental Health is a key partner of the Delaware and Morrow court systems and area hospitals as a premier provider of rehabilitative and counseling services for residents from all social and economic groups. Mental health continues to expand as one of the leading causes of diminished capacity for individuals both socially and economically, and as a result, Central Ohio Mental Health has seen its mission continue to expand. As of 2006, the organization employed over 1,500 individuals and served over 30,000 patients in its 50+ years. The organization remains financially viable through the support of area government agencies and patient fees. It is positioned to continue serving the community on a broad level for the foreseeable future.