Hospital to close psych unit, lay off...

Hospital to close psych unit, lay off 19 staffers - Sentinel & Ente...

There are 61 comments on the Sentinel & Enterprise story from Sep 30, 2010, titled Hospital to close psych unit, lay off 19 staffers - Sentinel & Ente.... In it, Sentinel & Enterprise reports that:

Financial strain caused by the federal health care reform bill left HealthAlliance Hospital officials no choice but to end behavioral health services offered at the Burbank Hospital campus, HealthAlliance CEO Patrick Muldoon said Wednesday.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Sentinel & Enterprise.

Doctor

Fitchburg, MA

#25 Sep 30, 2010
We can expect these same type of cuts to continue unabated.

Defensive business practices between Doctors and Hospitals throughout the country are now preventing people from keeping their "health care arrangements".
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274...

And to top all this off, many Businesses with 50 or more workers will be dropping generous health care coverage in favor of taking the $750 hit per employee. The annual savings to push employees off and into the the government taxpayers plan is enormous.

The penalty for 120 workers would be $90,000 annually instead of $480,000.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/03/23/eve...
Concerned

Lancaster, MA

#26 Sep 30, 2010
What a great decision Health Alliance!! Why dont we alienate our town even more? Wasnt it just recently stated that we are the social services MECCA of the state (Fitchburg and Leominster) and now you are getting rid of beds? I find it hard to believe that only 8 beds are being used on a daily basis, since most times, it is hard to find an adult bed for a mentally ill person.
Why not look into our community and see whats happeneing? We have children with severe mental health issues being trucked all over the state, some even out of the state, because there isnt sufficient health care for them. Research the population you serve Mr. Muldoon and see how the families out here are struggling to visit their loved ones, which is critical in treatment. Why not get licensed to have a few children/adolescent beds? Instead, you get rid of it. Heywood's putting Gardner on the map, and HealthAlliance is making Fitchburg/Leominster become NOTHING!!
Its true what everyone is saying - really, dont go to Leominster if you want to be seen in a short amount of time. I'd rather drive to boston where you can at least get decent care!! An hour drive each way is half as much time as youd have to wait to be seen!!
Is this really Obama Care? Or is it people with big pockets trying to make them even bigger!!!
Grub Worm

Fitchburg, MA

#27 Sep 30, 2010
The bad thing is that the nuts will be put back on the streets of Fitchburg.. But on the bright side, Wong Dong might have some compitition in the next Mayoral election.
Here We Go Again

Gardner, MA

#28 Sep 30, 2010
suckers wrote:
Ahhh, the Obabma health care law is starting to kick in!!!!!! If care ever gets cheaper (I doubt it) good luck finding it. Maybe in the back woods of Tennessee or mountains of West Virginia?
Could it be that Burbank cannot fund this type of service where Leominster Hospital can? Also the article said that other agencies will pick up the service and additional staff will be added. If the Obama health care plan will cut waste and be more efficient than I am all for it. Health care is expensive and the way hospitals do business needs to be changed.
david

Londonderry, NH

#29 Sep 30, 2010
i've been to burbank and let me tell you, i'd give my right arm last year to end up at burbank, and not Westwood, New Bedford, or Jamaica plain after sitting around leominster hospital for hours waiting for a psych eval.
RealChange

Bolton, MA

#30 Sep 30, 2010
Ask yourself WHY hospitals, employers and health care agencies around the country are cutting costs and services NOW even though only 1% of ObamaCare has been enacted.

Answer: They see the writing on the wall.

Picture three or four years from now under ObamaCare. The whole system collapses and our socialist/marxist government steps in for another government 'bail out' of the healthcare system by making it totally government run. Forget all that 'you can keep your own doctor or insurance if it works for you.'

All if it will CHANGE. And when it does, it will be CHANGE you won't believe.

Enjoy comrades, enjoy.
information

AOL

#31 Sep 30, 2010
HA Needs To Go wrote:
<quoted text>.
Yep Jim, I think you are right, and once again it is all about the money for the ones at the top of the food chain. I feel for the 19 staffers getting tossed to the curb, and they say that this area job outlook is improving. I don't see it, it appears to be getting worse every day. I wonder how big Muldoon's raise was this year?
Patients not having accessible mental health care and not having the ways or the means to get to Gardner, Leominster or other neighboring hospitals is going to create even more calls and problems for our Life Safety personnel, not just the police, but fire and EMTs as well. Along with further endangering innocent citizens.
all sotrue, and they all be going to the er for help, and taking up large amounts of time by staff and security

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#32 Sep 30, 2010
RealChange wrote:
Ask yourself WHY hospitals, employers and health care agencies around the country are cutting costs and services NOW even though only 1% of ObamaCare has been enacted.
Answer: They see the writing on the wall.
Picture three or four years from now under ObamaCare. The whole system collapses and our socialist/marxist government steps in for another government 'bail out' of the healthcare system by making it totally government run. Forget all that 'you can keep your own doctor or insurance if it works for you.'
All if it will CHANGE. And when it does, it will be CHANGE you won't believe.
Enjoy comrades, enjoy.
Exacty, isn't it ironic that Yvonne Senecal, who chairs the Massachusetts Nurses Association is now threatening to fight the very results of what her union supports. The road to single payer health care

Ohhhhhh, and the blatant LIES!

On June 30, 2003, speaking to an AFL-CIO Civil, Women's, and Human Rights Conference, Obama said this:

"I happen to be a proponent of single payer universal health care plans... A single payer health care plan, a universal health care plan. And that's what I'd like to see. But as all of you know, we may not get there immediately. Because first we have to take back the White House, we have to take back the Senate, and we have to take back the House."


In Portsmouth, New Hampshire on August 11, 2009 Obama said this:

"I have not said that I was a single-payer supporter, because, frankly, we historically have had a employer-based system in this country, with private insurers, and for us to transition to a system like that, I believe would be too disruptive."
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0908/1...

And the disruption begins, while in the middle of an economic tsunami...
Disgusted

Boston, MA

#33 Sep 30, 2010
As a former employee of Health Alliance, this does not surprise me in the least. The care at that establishment is downright poor, the wait times are hideous, and the management just plain sucks. This area serves many mental health patients and this new money "saving" strategy is going to put further strain on healthcare system and public safety employees (i.e. police responding to mentally ill people with nowhere to go causing havoc). It's just plain disgusting. Shame on you Health Alliance. A word to the wise... Drive to Clinton, Heywood, Emerson or Worcester.
bormin

Templeton, MA

#34 Sep 30, 2010
All of these "unintended" things will be happening,longer wait times in the ER, physc patients having limited access to services, crimes committed by these patients, substandard care, understaffing, substandard medical staff,
arrests, courts, incarceration-these last theree we all pay for- where by the way they have more help than is possible for a normal taxpaying citizen. The ramifications of the healthcare bill are too many to even list as it carries over into all of out lives, rich or poor. The government has had a problem track record of Medicare, Medicaid as well as VA healthcare, so now they take on all healthcare.
So the initial concerns of the elderly and unwell public is coming to fruitation. Elderly will experience early termination of services-- death by no services, physc patients will be terminated, by themselves or the system and anyone with extensive needs will find the hospice card dealt to them. Kinda sounds like the animal world, only the strong will survive. Only need to stay well to avoid this and not grow old. Simple!
Mike fom Leominster

Fitchburg, MA

#35 Sep 30, 2010
RealChange wrote:
Ask yourself WHY hospitals, employers and health care agencies around the country are cutting costs and services NOW even though only 1% of ObamaCare has been enacted.
Answer: They see the writing on the wall.
Picture three or four years from now under ObamaCare. The whole system collapses and our socialist/marxist government steps in for another government 'bail out' of the healthcare system by making it totally government run. Forget all that 'you can keep your own doctor or insurance if it works for you.'
All if it will CHANGE. And when it does, it will be CHANGE you won't believe.
Enjoy comrades, enjoy.
When this doesn't happen, I'm sure you'll be back to recant your prediction.

What am I saying, no you won't.
RealChange

Bolton, MA

#36 Sep 30, 2010
Mike fom Leominster wrote:'When this doesn't happen, I'm sure you'll be back to recant your prediction.'

And when it does, you and your family will have little time to worry about a website for Sentinel comments.

You'll be busy figuring out how you'll adjust your budget to pay for that 65% tax rate ... for all those new and horribly run government services.

Best of health to you!
res

Worcester, MA

#37 Sep 30, 2010
are you serious about the waiting not being that bad, i sat in that waiting room for 16 hours do see a damn doctor, THAT HOSPITAL ER IS A JOKE!!!
Leominster Resident wrote:
You've got to be kidding me! Mental health issues aren't anything to mess with. There could be a trigger at any given time and easy accesessable help is a must. Extreme level. What about the people who deal with daily mental issues who rely on treatment. whether having a med check or counsiling. With depression on the rise, why would you mess with resources that are for this area?
Leominster Hospital? Are you kidding me? It's not the waiting that's bad, it's the poor quility of care. Was there once for a simple x-ray. A family came in with someone that was apparently having a strock. Security guard made them wait. and when the family was desperate with wanting medical attention, the guard was all' saftly issue'. If you successfully want to die, you go to Leominster. well that's what people say. it's to bad with public transportation people won't have medical/mental services. Go to Nashoba or clinton!
What are you nuts

Leominster, MA

#38 Sep 30, 2010
HA Needs To Go wrote:
Email Jennifer Flanagan & Stephen Dinatale
Jennifer.Flanagan@state.ma.us
Rep.StephenDiNatale@Hou.State. MA.US
Please leave a message. We'll get back to you right before an election.
Resident

Fitchburg, MA

#39 Sep 30, 2010
Shaking My Head wrote:
Gee, Resident. Where are you going to live now?
Good to see I got under your skin, little man.

On a serious note, this is good reason to call our elected officials onto the carpet. Thank you to the previous posters wh provided contact info as well as the list of Sen. Flanagans contributors. That was very eyeopening as it appears that she may be beholden to the Hospital. Can't bite the hand that feeds you, right Jen?
liar

Leominster, MA

#40 Sep 30, 2010
res wrote:
are you serious about the waiting not being that bad, i sat in that waiting room for 16 hours do see a damn doctor, THAT HOSPITAL ER IS A JOKE!!!
<quoted text>
You are a LIAR. I have worked there for over TWO years and NEVER has there been a 16 hour wait in that waiting room. If your wait WAS for an extended period(i.e. 4 hours) then your issue was FAR from an actual life threatening emergency, which is what the ER is actually FOR.
intelligentdoglo ver

Brunswick, GA

#41 Sep 30, 2010
Why in the world would anybody give up a psychiactric ward in Fitchburg? No offense to Fitchburg residents, but, that hospital took alot of cases. My brother in law was there for a while, many years ago, and it helped him through. Just a sign of the times I guess, how sad.
Shaking My Head

Ashburnham, MA

#42 Oct 1, 2010
Voter wrote:
Shaking My Head,
I had a similar thought but about Sonny. Maybe they can split rent somewhere.
Add Stamos' disability payments, and they might be able to rent a house on Cleghorn.
Shaking My Head

Ashburnham, MA

#43 Oct 1, 2010
Resident wrote:
<quoted text>
Good to see I got under your skin, little man.
On a serious note, this is good reason to call our elected officials onto the carpet. Thank you to the previous posters wh provided contact info as well as the list of Sen. Flanagans contributors. That was very eyeopening as it appears that she may be beholden to the Hospital. Can't bite the hand that feeds you, right Jen?
Little man? Just shows me how ignorant you are.
Masshealth

Fitchburg, MA

#44 Oct 1, 2010
There are alot of issues. But Muldoon needs to look at patient care, not money. There are freeloaders coming to HA to get treated for the sniffles, bellyache, or bad cold in the ER. If they were forced to pay a $50 copayment BEFORE they were seen, they would just leave. This would save ALOT of expenses if they had a choice -- see a primary care doctor first or pay $50. All this waste would disapprear and the Mental Health services would stay afloat. And put mental health patients on a payment plan. The truly ill people will need to go there ... the freeloaders will be left out. But no, they can't refuse to treat anyone!! I remember a guy that came in when I worked there last year -- he came EVERYDAY because mommy couldn't handle him, so he needed a BED. 300 times $1000 each visit -- hmmm 1 patient $300,000 per year. That might save some money if you addressed it.

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