Navigation Links
Mental Health Advocates and Community Providers Support Allentown State Hospital Closing
Date:1/29/2010

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The mental health advocacy and provider communities in Pennsylvania support the decision by the PA Department of Public Welfare (DPW) to close Allentown State Hospital (ASH), an institution for people who have mental illnesses.  

Up to 125 people from ASH and Wernersville State Hospital (WeSH) will return to communities of their choice, and up to 65 will transfer from ASH to WeSH.  Although it would be ideal if every person was discharged to the community, mental health advocates and providers endorse DPW's decision, as it will enable the reintegration of approximately 125 people into the community and support community-based recovery and the development of recovery services that work.

"Having been a psychiatric patient myself, both in the community and a state hospital, I have experienced the full spectrum of treatment," said Pennsylvania resident Dan Craig.  "I learned to participate in the community and form relationships by living in the community. Having mental illness symptoms doesn't limit the possibilities of anyone's life.  Everyone is capable of holding jobs, volunteering, being a member of a church, synagogue, mosque or temple, participating politically, or going back to school.  These are all things that build our society, and enhance everyone's quality of life. Recovery is possible for everyone!"

"We have evidence that people living with mental illness are best served in supportive communities," said Judy Banks, deputy director of the Disability Rights Network of PA (DRN). "Recovery comes from living in small, integrated community settings with individualized supports, not from institutionalization.  We want this reality for every person who currently is in a state hospital and the closure of ASH is another step toward achieving that goal."

The importance of community integration to the recovery of people with serious mental illnesses has been endorsed by such experts as the Office of the Surgeon General (in its 1999 report, "Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General") and by the President's New Freedom Commission on Mental Health in its 2003 report.

Advocates point to the recent closings of three state hospitals as examples of the benefits of community integration.

  • In December 2008, Mayview State Hospital (MHS) closed, discharging individuals from Allegheny, Beaver, Lawrence, and Washington Counties to their communities, where they continue to receive regular, individualized, tailored supports around behavioral health, housing, employment, education, social activities, and physical health. A year later, a majority of those discharged into the community continue to reside in community-based residences.
  • Harrisburg State Hospital (HSH) closed in January 2006, with 187 of the 289 discharged individuals moving into the community. In a report issued one year later, the overwhelming majority of these residents remained in their communities thanks to ongoing, community-based care and services.  
  • In 1990 Philadelphia State Hospital (PSH) closed its doors. Five years later, a study by the Pew Charitable Trusts found that the overwhelming majority of those released at closure were living successfully in the community.

"Successful closures were made possible because the funding that supported the hospitals followed the individuals into the community to enhance the community based system of services and supports" said George Kimes, executive director of Pennsylvania Community Providers Association (PCPA). "It is essential that the resources supporting ASH move into the community."

"Individuals experience success after hospitalization when mental health professionals and communities are responsive to their unique strengths and needs," said Lynn Keltz, executive director of PA Mental Health Consumers' Association (PMHCA). "PMHCA encourages self determination with strong peer support and recovery oriented treatment."

"For someone who has never been in an institution, the stark contrast between community and institutional life is difficult to imagine," said Sue Walther, executive director of the Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania (MHAPA).  "But those who have can attest to the fact that people with even the most serious mental illnesses, including those with the least relief from their symptoms, can be served much more effectively in the community than within the walls of a state institution."

Pennsylvania statewide organizations that support the decision to close the state hospital include MHAPA, PMHCA, and DRN and PCPA.  

SOURCE Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania


'/>"/>
SOURCE Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania
Copyright©2010 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Experimental anti-cancer drug made from corn lillies kills brain tumor stem cells
2. College Mental Health Expert and Sister of Student Who Died By Suicide Available to Discuss College Mental Health Issues
3. HHS Announces $75 Million in Supplemental Funding to States for Pandemic Flu Preparedness
4. Virginia Tech Review Panel Calls For Reform of Mental Health Treatment Law
5. Therap Services Continues to Hire Experienced Developmental Disability Industry Clinicians for its Customer Support Team
6. The Philadelphia Walk Now for Autism Expected to Draw 10,000 Walkers and Raise $1 Million to Help Find Answers About the Nations Fastest-Growing Developmental Disorder
7. How Best to Treat Preschoolers With ADHD? The Harvard Mental Health Letter Discusses the Options
8. Experimental Antidepressants Offer Faster Relief
9. Environmental stress probed in cardiovascular disease, diabetes
10. UCLA receives $22.5 million to explore the fundamental biology of mental disorders
11. Mental Health Woes Strike Half of Cancer Patients
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... 2016 , ... When it came time to blow out his candles on his 14th birthday, ... Pediatric Heart Transplant team at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital surprised his family with a ... heart transplant recipient. , “He was playing at home, when we got the phone ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... services from offices located in South Lyon, Dewitt, Williamston, East Lansing, Ann Arbor, ... coach who needs treatment for a brain tumor. , Jason Bauer and his ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... 07, 2016 , ... Augustine Insurance Agency, a locally owned ... owners in the greater Dallas metropolitan area, is announcing a charity event that ... Established in 2009 by active police professionals in the Dallas region, the Dallas ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... AlignLife clinics nationwide are giving back to ... fortunate enough to receive bountiful gifts wrapped tightly under a Christmas Tree. AlignLife ... children of the world. , In exchange for generous donations, customers will receive a ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... OCTOBER XX, 2016 (PRWEB) (PRWEB) December 07, 2016 , ... ... “Canine Filamentous Dermatitis Associated with Borrelia Infection” reveals that a condition ... in the prestigious Journal of Veterinary Science & Medical Diagnosis. , Morgellons disease ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/6/2016)... DIEGO , Dec. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... on the development of Conditionally Active Biologic ... and Beijing Sinobioway Group Company, Limited (Sinobioway) ... for development.  The specific program candidates and ... March 2015, BioAtla and Sinobioway entered into ...
(Date:12/6/2016)... , Dec. 6, 2016 In this age ... to be hopeful.  A special kind of sunglasses, from ... anxious life. Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161205/445444 ... Robert Buck, the psychotherapist who developed and patented the ... to overcoming anxiety and worry.  "Anxiety doesn,t have ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... Dec. 5, 2016  Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc. (NYSE ... pursuant to its previously-announced cash tender offers (the ... table below (collectively, the "Notes"), approximately $2.6 billion in ... and not validly withdrawn on or prior to ... time, today, December 5, 2016 (the "Early Tender ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: