Ind. (AP) — Hundreds of patients will be shifted from Indiana's state
psychiatric hospitals into community-based care under a plan that
officials say will eliminate more than 500 jobs.
changes and the layoffs will come at the Logansport and Richmond state
hospitals, while units at the Evansville and Madison hospitals will be
converted to care for those with serious mental illnesses.
announced Thursday by the Family and Social Services Administration will
have patients with chronic addictions or mental disabilities moved into
home or community-based services. The moves are expected to reduce the
number of patients at the six state hospitals by about 30 percent and save
$15 million a year.
populations in state institutions is an obsolete way of caring for these
patients," FSSA spokesman Marcus Barlow said. "It is one of those
instances where you can give better care at lower costs. It will, in the
end, be cheaper for the state to pay to take care of these patients in the
community rather than at the institution."
State Hospital will have 355 of its 900 workers laid off and 80 vacant
positions eliminated as its current 388-patient capacity is cut by about
250. Its units for the mental disabled and those with addictions will
close, and the hospital will focus on treating patients such as those
incompetent to stand trial or who have completed prison sentences but
still need mental health services.
hospital will have 106 of 600 workers laid off and its patient capacity
cut from 312 to 211. Its youth services and substance abuse units will
close, with it focusing on patients with serious mental illnesses.
are expected to occur over several months and be completed by March.
not be moved out of the hospitals until we have places to put them,"
Barlow said. "No employees will be laid off until patients start moving
out of the hospital."
The Family and
Social Services Administration said Indiana spends about half of its
mental health and addition budget on community-based services, compared to
the national average of 70 percent.
associate executive director of ARC of Indiana, called community-based
services "a more effective and efficient use of state funds."
community-based services allow people with disabilities to live in a far
less restrictive setting, close to friends and family, with a greatly
improved quality of life," she said.