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Keep psychiatric center open to assist children

As a retired social worker, I believe the West Seneca Children’s Psychiatric Center must clearly define its mission as unique in order to stay open. It must define itself as a diagnostic center to assess the psycho-social needs of the children.

To accomplish this task, professional staff must begin to work adjusted schedules so that they are interacting with their clientele on weekends, evenings, early morning hours and holidays in order to quickly analyze the problems of children and their families. Having drawn up a treatment plan with the help of the interdisciplinary team, this plan must then be implemented and the professional must be on site to ensure that it is carried out as written.

Professionals must travel to the home of the discharged child to ensure that the discharge plan is understood and is being implemented.

When it is time to evaluated the performance of the professional, the supervisors will evaluate how well the direct care and other members of the team understand and carry out the plan. If the amount of time in the center is cut back, more children can actually be served. A utilization committee will evaluate every situation where a child is kept more than 30 days.

John Kirk, MSW, MBA

West Seneca