A health team from New Zealand, with a history in providing clinical psychiatric care for Pacific people, are to help with the design of a mental health facility for American Samoa.
The facility will be a two story building located at the Tafuna Family Health Center and will cater for both out patient and inpatient care.
The New Zealand team will provide input on a culturally appropriate design for the facility.
Federal funding will be used for the project, which the High Court has been calling for for some time.
The long term plan is to secure additional funding to build an adjacent wing that will be dedicated to substance abuse and mental health services.
It will have a larger capacity for inpatient care and have additional space for day treatment programs as well as house an medical detoxification program.
However, this will not be for another 2-4 years depending on the availability of funding.