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County Sees Increased Need for Psychiatric Services

There’s been a sharp upswing in the number of indigent people in Nevada County needing  psychiatric care.  At a Board of Supervisors briefing on an item to increase money spent on acute psychiatric inpatient services, Behavioral Health Director Michael Heggarty said many of these clients are coming to them  through the emergency room.

click to hear Michael Heggarty

Heggarty says County Behavioral Health has  been seeing a steady  increase in the need for mental health services over the past 18 months,  and  patients who  have no insurance will also be  referred for inpatient mental health services when needed as required by  State Law.   St. Helena Hospital in Valejo  is one of Nevada County’s   designated hospitals for these services. Heggarty says closer hospitals in Sacramento Yuba City, roseville, and Woodland are already full.  Heggarty was before  the board asking to approve a  $180,000 thousand dollar increase in their contract for   inpatient services with St. Helena Hospital.

click to hear Michael Heggarty

Heggarty says there is no impact on the county general fund. Monies for the mental health hospitalization comes from  Medicare, Medi-cal, private insurance the County Medical Services Plan and mental health realignment dollars.

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