A Friday Afternoon News Dump!

June 04, 2021

First – a quick reminder that we are doing short regional calls next week to try to assess what we can/should do to support you in your region.  You can find the log-on information here.

Second – Commissioner Land sent a notice this afternoon that announced a further reduction in the bed capacity at CCCA:
“I am writing to alert you of a change to the total available beds at the Commonwealth Center for Children & Adolescents (CCCA). You may recall that following a COVID-19 outbreak last fall, CCCA was only able to reopen its beds at a reduced level because of an inability to safely staff all its beds. Adequate staffing levels are of significant concern at other state hospitals and throughout the healthcare industry as the pandemic drives many workers to positions that pose less risk to their personal health and wellbeing. Immediately following that outbreak, CCCA and the DBHDS Central Office amplified an already aggressive recruiting effort that enabled CCCA to open 30 of its total 48 beds. However, because of current extreme staffing challenges, CCCA is unable to sufficiently cover all shifts and to ensure CCCA is a therapeutic and safe environment for both patients and staff. As a result, until further notice, CCCA will reduce its capacity by six beds, for a total of 24 beds.

“With recent discharges, the current census at CCCA is 24, so the hospital will not need to discharge additional patients to reach a 24-bed capacity. Currently, CCCA is operating at only 50 percent of its direct care staff, and only 50 percent of its registered nursing staff. We will be working diligently to improve staff to patient ratios and plan to reopen beds incrementally as staffing levels improve.”

“In the meantime, CCCA will be working intensely with community providers of children and adolescent residential treatment, including private hospitals and other DBHDS licensed providers, to take admissions that would otherwise be sent to CCCA. There will likely be delays while DBHDS works to make beds available at these alternate locations. In addition, CCCA is identifying current patients who are appropriate for step-down admission to other community residential providers, and working with CSBs to ensure services needed for safe discharges are available for those who are clinically ready to return home.

The concern from our end is that somehow there is an expectation that we are less impacted by the extraordinary staff shortage!

Third — The DD Waivers Rates Rebase survey was released today; here is the link.

Have a great weekend!