Streams

Loss of Holliswood Means Loss of Inpatient Program for Vets, Families

Monday, August 19, 2013

The closure of Holliswood Hospital in Queens also means the loss of an innovative inpatient program to treat veterans from around the country and their families.

In addition to offering inpatient care for illnesses like post-traumatic stress disorder, Holliswood was working with non-profit group Hope for the Warriors to extend counseling to families.

The non-profit helped cover the cost of transporting families to the hospital so that they could more easily receive therapy alongside their loved ones. The goals of the Family Reintegration Program included fostering a better understanding of what servicemembers are going through and working together with their families to improve communication and recovery.

Tina Atherall, executive vice president of the group, said family support is a very important part of recovery. "We knew that it was a huge gap in services that the families did not receive any type of education, psycho-ed, additional counseling when the service member or veteran was inpatient, in particular," she said.

Atherall said her group doesn't have a partnership with another inpatient facility at this time.

The loss of Holliswood is alarming, she said. "It is a significant punch," Atherall said. "They ... admitted service members from across the country. They weren't just limited to Queens."

Atherall said the model of care developed at Holliswood will continue. The Family Reintegration Program has already been expanded to other facilities across the country that include programs like art therapy, couples therapy and yoga, and that focus on treating servicemembers and their families, too.

Hear the story by Annmarie Fertoli by clicking the audio above.

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