Appel Discusses Behavioral Health Bed Shortage with Bridge

Laura Apple

Laura AppleBridge Michigan published an article Oct. 4 which focuses on the staffing challenges impacting behavioral health providers that limit bed capacity. The article begins by reviewing the number of reduced beds at state psychiatric facilities.

Laura Appel, executive vice president of government relations and public policy, MHA, contributed to the story. The article also references statewide aggregate data compiled by the MHA on the loss of staffed hospital beds and the dramatic increase in contract labor expenses. Shared in a report recently provided to the Michigan Legislature, the state has approximately 1,400 less staffed acute-care inpatient beds now compared to Oct. 2020 and Michigan hospitals are expected to spend $1.1 billion on contract labor compared to $516 million in 2021.

“We are working with the state to try and figure out how to make it through this crisis,” said Appel. “At the same time, I can’t blame (state officials) for their challenges.”

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