Orange County Board of Supervisors Commits $16.6M for Creation of First Regional Mental Health and Wellness Campus

01.29.19 | by Be Well Orange County



New campus marks beginning of Be Well OC system of mental health care and support for all Orange County residents


Santa Ana, Calif. – Jan. 29, 2019The Orange County Board of Supervisors (OCBOS) today announced it has committed $16.6 million for the creation of the county’s first Be Well Orange County (OC) Regional Mental Health and Wellness Campus. Be Well OC is a transformative initiative bringing together public, private, academic and faith-based organizations, as well as others, to create a coordinated system of mental health care and support for all Orange County residents.


The Wellness Campus at 265 Anita Drive exemplifies the spirit of the Be Well OC public- private partnership. CalOptima, Kaiser and St. Joseph Hoag Health are joining the Board of Supervisors in the creation of the new 60,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility that will replace an existing 45,000-square-foot, two-story office building. This is a significant sign of systems change for mental health and wellness in Orange County. The projected cost for the campus is $40 million and construction is expected to commence in late Spring 2019.


“One of Orange County’s primary goals is to support healthy living, both physical and mental, for all our residents,” said Orange County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Lisa Bartlett. “Bringing together the County, CalOptima and our private sector providers to create a campus capable of meeting the complex needs of those with mental illness will create a benefit for all County residents regardless of payer status.”


265 Anita Drive is the first of three Be Well OC Regional Wellness Campuses planned for Orange County. Each campus will provide common core services, as well as services tailored to the unique population needs of the region, creating an ecosystem of services never before so systematically available to Orange County residents.


“Increasing access to mental health and substance use disorder services helps ensure we are getting vital care to those most in need,” said Supervisor Andrew Do, First District. “Innovative ways of tailoring these and other in-demand services to our communities are a result of robust public-private partnership.”


The Be Well OC initiative aspires to create a best-in-class system of mental health care and support for all Orange County residents. The Be Well OC effort, which also includes substance use services, spans across all cities in Orange County and a range of needs, from prevention and early intervention to crisis aversion, acute care and recovery.


Additional Stakeholder Quotes:


Orange County Board of Supervisors Vice Chair, Michelle Steel: “This public, private partnership is a great step toward improving the quality of mental health services in Orange County,” said Orange County Board of Supervisors, Vice Chair, Michelle Steel. “Our Be Well OC Regional Wellness Campus will help address mental health and wellness for Orange County residents from all walks of life. I look forward to working with my colleagues at the Board of Supervisors and CalOptima as well as healthcare professionals throughout our community to ensure we provide the best health services to our residents.”


Orange County Supervisor Doug Chaffee, Fourth District: “This first Be Well campus at Anita Drive is a long overdue concept that not only provides mental health care and support for all Orange County residents, it also shows what we can achieve when public, private, academic, faith-based and other entities come together to solve challenges,” said Supervisor Doug Chaffee. “Preventing and treating behavioral health issues is a challenge that all of us should commit to and this project is a significant milestone for all of us in Orange County.”


CalOptima: “As Orange County’s community-based Medi-Cal plan, CalOptima is excited about this new approach to mental health care that removes barriers and brings together the full range of services,” said Michael Schrader, CEO, CalOptima. “Our Board of Directors’ wholehearted support for this initiative is driven by the advantage of unprecedented access to services for vulnerable Medi-Cal members who face very real challenges with transportation, language and more. The Be Well OC campus will make it easier for our members to get help.”


Kaiser: “Kaiser Permanente is proud of our involvement in this exceptional project. This facility is a testament to the care and concern of partners within healthcare, government, faith-based, and business organizations – a true public-private partnership,” said Mark Costa, senior vice president, Kaiser Permanente Orange County. “I am excited that this facility will address a critical health care need of so many of our citizens. It will serve as a beacon of hope to all that come through its doors.”


St. Joseph Hoag Health: “St. Joseph Hoag Health is committed to preventing and treating behavioral health issues and connecting Orange County community members to the care they need,” said Erik G. Wexler, CEO, Providence St. Joseph Health, Southern California. Wexler oversees the affiliation between Providence St. Joseph Health and Hoag in Orange County. “Be Well is the type of unique partnership we believe fills a critical gap in caring for those with mental illness. It is a model for communities across the nation to lift the stigma and to skillfully and compassionately address an issue that has been in the shadows for far too long.”


The vision of Be Well OC is to lead the nation in optimal mental health and wellness for all residents of Orange County. Be Well brings together a robust, community-based, cross- sector strategy – public, private, academic, faith-based and others – to create a community- wide coordinated ecosystem to support optimal mental health. For more information visit