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Press Releases

Bellevue Hospital Celebrates 90 Years of Child Psychiatry, Opens New Inpatient Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Unit

Oct 30, 2013

New York, NY

Bellevue Hospital Center, a member of the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC), today announced the opening of a new, 15-bed inpatient psychiatric unit for adolescents that expands the inpatient capacity and enables the hospital to address the growing need for inpatient mental health services for children and adolescents.
Bellevue currently operates 30 child and adolescent inpatient psychiatry beds, serving more than 400 young people annually. The $2.2 million project brings the total number of inpatient beds for children and adolescents to 45 beds and brings the total square footage of the children and adolescent inpatient psychiatric services to 4,500 square feet. The secure unit has been designed to provide an optimal environment for the treatment of psychiatric crises, including depression, suicidal or aggressive behavior, psychosis and serious family conflicts. Bellevue Hospital leadership today held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and tours of the new unit, which will be fully operational for patients in November.
“The opening of this unit couldn’t be more timely,” said Dr. Jennifer Havens, Director and Chief of Service of the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. “Over the last three years we have lost over 100 inpatient psych beds for kids in New York City. This new unit will allow us to serve another 200 to 250 teens annually.”
Bellevue Hospital has been a pioneer in the field of child mental health for 90 years, opening the first children’s psychiatric inpatient service in 1923 and the world’s first adolescent psychiatric inpatient unit in 1937.
“For 90 years, Bellevue has been a leader in psychiatric services for children and this unit continues that history,” said Steven Alexander, Executive Director of Bellevue Hospital Center. “We are providing high quality, professional and compassionate care for children and adolescents in crisis, with the goal of making a difference in the course of their lives.”
Bellevue Hospital’s mental health services for children and adolescents include:

  • The only Children’s Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CCPEP) in New York State, which provides up to 72 hours of evaluation and intervention of the child or adolescent, reducing the need for inpatient admissions.
  • Inpatient and outpatient mental health services for children and adolescents.
  • Day treatment for children and adolescents.
  • On-site New York City Department of Education school for inpatient and outpatient children and adolescents.

In recent years, Bellevue has experienced a steady increase in the number of children and adolescents coming to the emergency room in psychiatric crisis for reasons associated with a number of factors: society’s growing awareness of children’s mental health issues; the crisis of teen suicide; and increased referrals from schools that have implemented psychiatric assessment protocols to prevent school violence.
The expansion of the inpatient service was funded through a New York State Health Care Efficiency and Affordability Law (HEAL) grant.


Contact: Ian Michaels (HHC) (212) 788-3339 Bellevue Public Affairs (212) 562-4516

About Bellevue Hospital Center

Bellevue is a member of the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) and is America’s oldest hospital, established in 1736. Affiliated with the NYU School of Medicine, Bellevue is a major referral center for highly complex cases. The 828-bed hospital has more than 4,000 employees and runs an extensive ambulatory care program that provides more than 500,000 outpatient primary care and specialty care visits annually. Its emergency room sees more than 125,000 visits every year. Clinical centers of excellence include: Emergency Medicine and Trauma Care; Cardiovascular Services; Designated Regional Perinatal Center and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (ICU); Comprehensive Children’s Psychiatric Emergency Program; and Cancer Services.

About HHC

The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) is a $6.7 billion integrated healthcare delivery system with its own 420,000 member health plan, MetroPlusHealth, and is the largest municipal healthcare organization in the country. HHC serves 1.4 million New Yorkers every year and more than 475,000 are uninsured. HHC provides medical, mental health and substance abuse services through its 11 acute care hospitals, four skilled nursing facilities, six large diagnostic and treatment centers and more than 70 community based clinics. HHC Health and Home Care also provides in-home services for New Yorkers. HHC was the 2008 recipient of the National Quality Forum and The Joint Commission’s John M. Eisenberg Award for Innovation in Patient Safety and Quality. For more information, visit www.nychhc.org/hhc or find us on facebook.com/NYCHealthSystem or twitter.com/NYCHealthSystem.