Council Connect Articles

Stakeholders Gather to Discuss Behavioral Health in Humboldt County


  • Hospital Council and CHA
  • Hospital executives
  • California State Polytechnic University, Humboldt 
  • Local health officials 
  • Community safety leaders 
  • Emergency medical services personnel 
  • Verily Life Sciences 


Behavioral health care and substance abuse treatment stakeholders in Humboldt County met with Hospital Council and CHA leadership on June 1 at The Historic Eagle House in downtown Eureka to discuss behavioral health and substance abuse challenges in the county. Hospital Council convened the interdisciplinary group a day after The Humboldt Independent ran a front-page article about 5150 patients overwhelming local hospital emergency departments.

Connie Stewart of Cal Poly Humboldt discussed a number of ambitious initiatives that the university — California’s newly minted third polytechnic — is undertaking to better support behavioral health in the county. Sgt. Leonard La France of the Community Safety Engagement Team talked about law enforcement interventions with individuals experiencing behavioral distress and how his team engages with the local unhoused community. Providence St. Joseph Hospital Eureka Chief Operating Officer Frank Beirne shared that Providence has been evaluating investment in a triage center in the county, a sentiment echoed by Humboldt County Behavioral Health Director Emi Botzler-Rodgers. The group also heard from Verily Life Sciences economics lead Rebecca Messing Haigler about her company’s OneFifteen addiction recovery project in Ohio and discussed whether such an undertaking may be viable locally.

Takeaways / Next Steps

For informational purposes only.