Association Executive Directors Community

Expand all | Collapse all

Psych Hospital Denying Admissions w/o Negative COVID Test

  • 1.  Psych Hospital Denying Admissions w/o Negative COVID Test

    Posted 07-21-2020 16:20
    As I mentioned on today's call and a few weeks ago, our State-run psychiatric hospital is denying admissions to individuals experiencing a psychiatric crisis unless they have had a negative COVID test within 72 hours of admission. I am providing our Association's letter outlining our concern and recommending segregating patients. I am also attaching the State's response (essentially, it's State policy, there are staffing concerns, and we don't have adequately prepared space). Late last week a staff member tested positive for COVID and they closed the hospital down completely to all new admissions.

    What I could use from you...

    What is your state's policy? How are psychiatric hospitals in your state and inpatient/residential settings dealing with this?
    Have you seen any policy guidance or best practices?

    Thanks - Tom

    ------------------------------
    Tom Chard
    Chief Executive Officer
    Alaska Behavioral Health Association (ABHA)
    (907) 321-5778 | tom@alaskabha.org
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: Psych Hospital Denying Admissions w/o Negative COVID Test

    Posted 07-22-2020 16:49
    Tom,
    So sorry to have heard about this yesterday.  It really is horrid.  Here in NJ we have not had such problems.  Our State hospitals have quarantine units and are testing patients and staff on a regular basis.   Discharges from the hospitals to supervised housing (GH's) remains a challenge because most providers dont have the ability to quarantine someone in a small 5 bed or smaller home and request a negative test at time of discharge.  THis is less of an issue in supportive (independent) housing, as the person isn't exposed to others, can quarantine and staff can provide remote services or use PPE.
    Regards,
    Kim Higgs

    ------------------------------
    Kimberley Higgs
    Executive Director
    New Jersey Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association
    Middletown NJ
    908-612-1287
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: Psych Hospital Denying Admissions w/o Negative COVID Test

    Posted 07-22-2020 16:49
    Tom,
    Policy at our NJ State hospitals has been to quarantine individuals who test positive for COVID at time of admission in designated units.   Testing access was limited early on, for both patients and staff, but this has been resolved. We had a number of bumps in discharges to our supervised residences earlier in the pandemic, however as testing access increased, people were tested pre-discharge and the hospitals were able to work with the residences to discharge people safely.  I had the opportunity to speak to a number of our members on a call today, and none reported problems working with our State hospitals, including accessing care, at this time.
    Regards,
    Kim Higgs

    ------------------------------
    Kimberley Higgs
    Executive Director
    New Jersey Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association
    Middletown NJ
    908-612-1287
    ------------------------------