‘Every Day Is an Emergency’: The Pandemic Is Worsening Psychiatric Bed Shortages Nationwide

December 23, 2020

(STAT News) – The Covid-19 pandemic has dramatically cut the availability of inpatient psychiatric beds, with facilities across the country forced to reduce their capacity to meet social distancing requirements, stem outbreaks of the virus, or repurpose psychiatric beds to care for the surge of Covid-19 patients. The crisis — combined with years of mental health care budget cuts, rising demand for mental health care, and an existing shortage of both psychiatric beds and providers — appears to have put health care systems on a wartime footing.