SUPPORT – S4630 Gallivan/A6505 Kearns – SAVE THE WESTERN NY CHILDREN’S PSYCHIATRIC CENTER

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ON SENATE MENTAL HEALTH AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES AGENDA 5/16/17

SAVE THE WESTERN NY CHILDREN’S PSYCHIATRIC CENTER

S4630 Gallivan/A6505 Kearns

The New York State AFL‐CIO, representing over 2.5 million union members, their families as well as our retirees and their families supports the above referenced legislation.

This bill amends the Mental Hygiene Law to keep the Western New York Children’s Psychiatric Center (WNYCPC) open and prevent the transfer of patients to the Buffalo Psychiatric Center. Since announcing the closure of WNYCPC the communities of Western New York have opposed this plan as it will negatively impact access to quality of care that is currently provided and will mean longer travel times for the affected families.

The WNYCPC cares for emotionally disturbed children who often suffer from psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, and psychosis. The needs are unique and the appropriate setting is vital to effectiveness. The inpatient teams of doctors, nurses, social workers, therapists and other direct care workers ensure a comprehensive treatment approach specifically designed for children.

The plan to transfer these services to the Buffalo Psychiatric Center is troublesome enough in terms of its ability to provide the needed children’s services. That facility is designed to serve adults and is not necessarily appropriate for children. The fact that there are sex offenders and other extremely difficult to serve adult populations at the Buffalo Psychiatric Center makes it clear that continuation down this road could be disastrous.  

This Federation urges this bill be passed.

 

For further information contact the Legislative Department at 518-436-8516.