TOPEKA (KSNT) – Hospitals across the state are losing resources to serve people with mental health challenges, and the effects are trickling down to some local mental health clinics.
On Tuesday, the Special Committee on Mental Health Beds met with Kansas lawmakers earlier this week asking them to provide more space for more beds in mental health hospitals. In Kansas, there are about 330 inpatient mental health beds in hospitals. Members of the committee say that is not enough, and people with mental health needs have been turned away from hospitals.
Marilyn Murphy, director of Sunshine Connection Mental Health Clinic in Topeka, says recently, some of her clients have been forced to seek treatment at local nursing homes, because they have no other option. Murphy says Kansas legislators to take notice.
“If there is any funding out there,” Murphy said. “It needs to be released and not be sitting somewhere collecting dust. It needs to be used.”
The committee also hopes to address the staffing shortages in the hospitals mental health wards.