Opinion

San Diego Mental Health Facilities are in Peril

Mental health facilities have been closing down for decades, making it challenging for the mentally ill to get the help they desperately need. San Diego is not immune to this growing national concern. Tri-City medical center, in Oceanside, closed its behavioral health beds last year, citing financial challenges. In total, 18 psychiatric inpatient beds and 12 crisis units were lost last fall.

Two Democrats, Supervisor Nathan Fletcher and Assemblywoman Tasha Boerner Horvath, sent a demanding letter to Tri-City to come up with a plan to reinstate psychiatric emergency services within 30 days or face a state audit. Tri-City was said to be disappointed by the letter.

Fletcher says he has waited months for the district to come up with solutions for the hospital’s lack of behavioral health services, explaining that “I think the audit will help provide detailed information that can help us shape and craft a legislative remedy.”

By contrast, Supervisor Kristin Gaspar called the letter a “self-serving political statement.”

Fletcher barked back by saying “for over a year, Supervisor Gaspar has been more interested in standing with Donald Trump than solving our regional mental health problems. It’s time to get the inpatient beds back online.”

While it’s concerning that we seemingly don’t have money to fund our state hospitals that serve American citizens who may need psychiatric help, California Democrats continue to prioritize providing illegal immigrants with medical coverage. Democrats ought to put American citizens before illegal immigrants, instead of just pointing the finger at Republican leaders.

 

Photo by Nik Shuliahin