The Windham County Delegation has been aware of ongoing financial challenges being experienced by the Brattleboro Retreat related to multi-year, inadequate medicaid reimbursements, unexpected census declines, and the increasing cost of contract RNs and MDs due to national and state-wide workforce shortages.
The Brattleboro Retreat is a 150 year old private mental healthcare institution providing quality, compassionate healthcare to the most vulnerable Vermonters.
As we see play out every day across the country and our state, adequate funding for public healthcare remains an unsolved challenge.
Since Tropical Storm Irene, the Retreat has served as a contracted arm of the Agency of Human Services in the provision of state mental healthcare services. This means the Retreat has repeatedly been faced with decision making that requires it prioritize the public good over profit.
Today over 50% of all of Vermont’s inpatient psychiatric treatment beds, 100% of Vermont’s child/teen treatment beds and 150 HUB suboxone treatment slots are a part of the Retreat’s operations.
The Windham County delegation is proud our region is home to such compassionate care for so many vulnerable Vermonters. We support the decisions the Retreat has made to answer the Agency of Human Services repeated requests to expand its state beds and services in order to help the State of Vermont provide mental healthcare to Vermonters in the most acute need.
To say we are disappointed by Secretary Smith’s public statement issued today is an understatement. We have no doubt that the State of Vermont will continue to work, responsibly, in partnership with the Retreat to continue to provide care for all patients. We will work diligently with the Scott Administration and the Retreat to ensure that is the case.
Representative Mollie Burke
Representative Emilie Kornheiser
Representative Tristan Toleno
Representative Laura Sibilia
Representative Nader Hashim