County Health Services Face Cuts, Again

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Ann Edwards-Buckley is Sacramento County’s Health and Human Services director. She says every HHS program will take a hit in the latest budget negotiations. A mix of state funding cuts on top of declining county tax revenues contributed to the new shortfall. Now her department’s looking at an additional almost $23 million reduction. That could mean cutting the number of psychiatric beds in half at the county’s acute care mental health hospital. Buckley says this will put a huge strain on other health care facilities.
“Medical hospital emergency rooms will be filled up with mental health clients as we see these reductions in beds.”
Buckley also says almost 200 people in the Child Protective Services Department could be laid off. She says that’s almost a 25 percent staff cut. And she says one of the only county health clinics left will be open two days a week instead of five. The Board of Supervisors will vote on the final budget in September.