Press Release Archive

Press Release Archive

Harrison will close its Behavioral Health Unit May 1 - 4/1/2009

MEDIA STATEMENT


Harrison Medical Center President & CEO Scott Bosch announced today that Harrison will close its Behavioral Health Unit on May 1. This decision does not diminish our commitment to mental healthcare services in the region. Together with the leadership of our community partners, including Kitsap Mental Health, we have created a plan of care that assures continued access for all.

The unit’s declining patient census has resulted in operational losses that are unsustainable. “This is a very difficult decision but one that we felt we needed to make at this time,” says Bosch. In the previous year, the 12-bed unit has operated at an average daily census of three patients.

“We have increasingly treated patients with behavioral health conditions on our general medical care units as a result of the limited scope of services available on the Behavioral Health Unit,” explains RN Cynthia May, Harrison’s Vice President of Operations and Chief Nursing Officer. “We will continue to provide medical care and social work services for all patients.”

Harrison’s Emergency Department, the community’s safety net, will continue to help patients who need mental health services, explains Medical Director Dr. Bill Morris. “Whether we treat these patients on our own medical units or facilitate their care with Kitsap Mental Health or other treatment facilities, we will always serve all who come through our doors.”

The closing of the unit affects 23 employees and several physicians. We are making our best effort to place these well-qualified staff in existing opportunities elsewhere in the organization. We will continue to contract with community providers for psychiatric consulting services in the Emergency Department and inpatient units.

Harrison is in discussion with Diamond Healthcare who has expressed interest in providing enhanced services within the community, including outpatient care. Diamond is a national leader in the planning, development and operation of high quality Behavioral Health Services.