A Dearth Of Hospital Beds For Patients In Psychiatric Crisis

(By – Jenny Gold, Kaiser Health News)

When Pam Lipp’s 18-year-old daughter Amanda needed to be admitted to a psychiatric hospital in 2010, she thought it would be easy to find her a bed.

Instead, Lipp says, “It was a nightmare.”

Her daughter had been admitted to a psychiatric crisis center during an episode of psychosis but she could only stay there for 72 hours. Lipp asked the crisis center for help finding her a bed and was told she was on her own.

So Lipp plugged her phone into the wall in the waiting room and started calling one hospital after the next. They were all full. They wouldn’t reserve a spot when a bed opened, nor would they call to let her know. So she called each one every half hour to check. After eight hours, she found her daughter an open bed near their home in Fair Oaks, California. Read more…

 

Kaiser Health News is a nonprofit national health policy news service that is part of the nonpartisan Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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