Post Content


By DMH Commissioner Marcia Fowler

Today marks the official opening of the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH) Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital (WRCH). The new, state-of-the-art facility represents an evolution in modern public psychiatric care and treatment and reflects a remarkable collaboration among scores of stakeholders in the mental health community.

Since 2005, when the first meeting of the state’s Department of Mental Health Facility Feasibility Commission took place, the guiding principles for this historic project have always focused on recovery for individuals with serious mental illness and on Community First, the Patrick-Murray Administration’s principle of prioritizing a person’s reintegration into the community. DMH believes that true recovery from mental illness is not only possible, it is real.

I am so grateful to the hundreds of individuals, agencies and organizations who, for the past seven years, have dedicated their energy, expertise and hard work to creating the Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital, and the hope we know it will bring to many individuals and their families.

WRCH is designed to foster dignity and respect for all who come through its doors; the building’s design and features themselves guide the recovery journey for adults and adolescents who need continuing care. WRCH will lead the nation, and possibly the world, in how clinical treatment and the recovery model can restore purpose and independence to persons whose lives have been interrupted by serious mental illness.

A crowning achievement of this magnitude could not be possible without the commitment, faith and compassion of many. To name them all would fill volumes, but I attempt here to acknowledge these remarkable folks who have made their mark on this extraordinary facility.

Under the leadership of Governor Patrick, Lt. Governor Murray and Executive Office of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. JudyAnn Bigby, the creation of WRCH will ensure that citizens with serious mental illness are treated with dignity and respect and provided access to the best care and treatment in the nation. All of the thought and development that has gone into WRCH has unceasingly kept a keen eye toward recovery for all of individuals seeking care.

I extend my heartfelt thanks to the members and staff of the Department of Mental Health Feasibility Commission and the Massachusetts Legislature who have shown unwavering leadership and support for citizens with serious mental illness.  I also want to thank former DMH Commissioner Barbara Leadholm, who, during her tenure led the Department and our stakeholders, community, consumers and families in their deep commitment to recovery, the principle of Community First and an innovative, state-of-the-art psychiatric hospital for Massachusetts.

The success of this project would not have been possible without the partnership of the Division of Capital Asset Management; Ellenszweig Associates; and Gilbane Inc., who for the past five years have worked collaboratively and closely with DMH and our stakeholders to conceptualize, design and build a public psychiatric hospital that sets the state for reforming mental health care and treatment nationwide.

I especially want to extend my deepest appreciation to the many DMH staff, who over the past five years, have spent countless hours working on developing WRCH and informing a hospital design that keeps recovery as its focus and is infused in every aspect of the building and grounds. Thank you for your tremendous contribution to WRCH and to the Department.

It takes a village to raise a child, and today’s opening reflects the entire community it took to build Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital. Without the many contributions of creativity, compassion and innovation of so many, we would not have the facility we are so proud to open today. On behalf of all citizens of the Commonwealth, I extend my gratitude to all who made it possible.


# # #


Written By:

Recent Posts

What You Need to Know about MassOptions! posted on Nov 25

What You Need to Know about MassOptions!

The number of older adults and individuals with disabilities in Massachusetts is rapidly growing. We know that navigating programs and services can sometimes be complicated, and we are committed to facilitating better access for the people we serve. That is why the Baker-Polito Administration along   …Continue Reading What You Need to Know about MassOptions!

A picture is worth a thousand words… posted on Nov 24

A picture is worth a thousand words…

A picture is worth a thousand words.  It also could be worth a new home for a child in need. “There is something about seeing the face of a child awaiting adoption that speaks to the heart,” said Jake Murtaugh with MARE, Inc. “Each picture   …Continue Reading A picture is worth a thousand words…

Women Veterans Recognized for Service and Strong Network at Appreciation Event posted on Nov 10

Women Veterans Recognized for Service and Strong Network at Appreciation Event

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is proud to honor all of those who have served our country in the armed forces this Veteran’s Day. Massachusetts is also proud to have a strong Women Veteran’s Network that acts as a central resource for women veterans. Established in   …Continue Reading Women Veterans Recognized for Service and Strong Network at Appreciation Event