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7:26 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

A Regional Role For A Local Psychiatric Center

Credit NYS Office of Mental Health

New York State is planning to close and consolidate nearly two dozen  psychiatric hospitals statewide with new centers over the next four years.

Under the Office of Mental Health's plan, the Rochester Psychiatric Center will transform into a Regional Forensic Center of Excellence beginning next year.

By 2017, the Rochester Psychiatric Center is expected to morph into the Western New York Forensic Center of Excellence operating 155 inpatient beds.

The center will merge its adult inpatient capacity with Buffalo and Syracuse under a newly created Great Lakes Regional Center of Excellence.

A spokesperson from the Office of Mental Health says no layoffs are currently planned with the changes, and they will work with employees for retaining or transferring their jobs.

Officials say the Great Lakes RCE will be positioned as a national leader in providing research-based care and a broad range of innovative, psychiatric and addiction services for all ages.

The state says it spends about $6.6 billion, including federal money, on mental health treatment every year.

The state expects to save $20 million  in the first year of the four-year transition plan