Bloomberg News (6/5, Moroney) reports, “Hurricane Irene wiped out the last state-operated psychiatric beds in Vermont nine months ago. Since then, private-hospital emergency rooms have been backed up with mentally ill patients — some handcuffed to ER beds for as long as two days.” Each month, “dozens of people are turned away…without being admitted, and calls to Burlington police about mental-health issues increased 32 percent over the prior year.”
In the Washington Post (6/5) “Wonkblog,” Sarah Kliff discusses the Bloomberg News piece, adding that such “changes aren’t unique to Vermont. During the recession, 3,144 psychiatric beds were eliminated across the country in 2009.”
— “Sleeping in Vermont Dumpster Shows Psychiatric Cuts’ Cost,”Tom Moroney, Bloomberg News, June 04, 2012.