Press Release

Press Release Baker-Polito Administration Marks One-Year Anniversary of Reforms at Bridgewater State Hospital

Significant improvements in delivery of care, hospital administration and staff training
For immediate release:
5/16/2018
  • Governor Charlie Baker | Lt. Governor Karyn Polito
  • Daniel Bennett, EOPSS Secretary
  • Joan Mikula, DMH Commissioner
  • Governor's Press Office

Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Marks One-Year Anniversary of Reforms at Bridgewater State Hospital

Brendan Moss, Press Secretary, Governor's Office

BRIDGEWATERGovernor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito joined Executive Office of Public Safety and Security Secretary Daniel Bennett, Department of Correction (DOC) Commissioner Thomas Turco, Department of Mental Health Commissioner Joan Mikula, and staff from Correct Care Solutions (CCS) to mark the one-year anniversary of the Bridgewater State Hospital (BSH) transition and successful Joint Commission Survey. Under the Baker-Polito Administration’s leadership, Massachusetts partnered with CCS in 2017 to improve quality of care for persons with serious mental illness at Bridgewater State Hospital.

Between March 2017 and April 2018, Bridgewater has seen a 91 percent reduction in the number of hours of patient seclusion and a 99 percent reduction in the number of hours of mechanical restraint. The Intensive Treatment Unit (ITU) was closed on the first day of the transition in favor of providing treatment in the housing units. 

“Our administration is pleased with the substantive improvements in care at Bridgewater State Hospital that began on day one of this transition and continue now,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “We remain committed to working with hospital leadership and everyone impacted by the facility to ensure patients receive the behavioral health care they need in an environment much more conducive for recovery. Our administration also looks forward to continuing our collaboration with the Legislature to allocate nearly $60 million from this year's budget to fully-fund these improvements for the facility.​”

“A great deal of hard work and coordination between multiple state agencies and Correct Care Solutions makes this transition possible,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “Our administration looks forward to continued improvements in treatment for patients served at Bridgewater State Hospital.”

Under the new model, correctional officers were reassigned to the Bridgewater perimeter and significant changes were made to improve patient care through a more therapeutic environment and traditional hospital setting. Clinical staff implemented individualized treatment plans that feature a more proactive approach, including community meetings and safety-based access to common areas to promote patient engagement in treatment activities. Evidence-based staff trainings on topics including trauma-informed care, recovery from mental illness, violence prevention, suicide prevention, and stages of change were given, as well as mandated de-escalation and trauma training for all staff in orientation.

The administration’s FY19 budget proposal includes $59 million to fully fund the new clinical contract and continue to invest in the Hospital’s transformation.

“CCS has implemented best practices in staff development, expansion of therapeutic programming as well as strengthened collaborative partnerships,” said Secretary Daniel Bennett. “They did this all while partnering with DOC for the three-year Joint Commission Re-accreditation Survey, maintaining their accreditation. It was a true testament to their dedication.”

“The treatment of men with a mental illness at Bridgewater now reflects high quality care based on the evidence of what works,” said DMH Commissioner Joan Mikula. “The Hospital's transformation in only one year reflects a profound shift for the Commonwealth.”

“The success we’ve seen over the past year at Bridgewater State Hospital is just the beginning of what we hope to implement and achieve at the facility,” said Jorge Dominicis, Correct Care Solutions Chief Executive Officer. “All patients – especially those who are typically underserved – deserve consistently high-quality care. CCS will continue to improve services at Bridgewater State Hospital and to integrate the evidence-based programs, innovative technologies, and trauma-informed care that CCS provides in facilities across the country.”

Correction Officers are now assigned to provide perimeter security at the facility, more closely aligning with their core mission. Two specialty mental health units were also opened at the Old Colony Correctional Center on the Bridgewater Complex to provide continued intensive mental health services to the state criminally sentenced population who were once treated at the Bridgewater State Hospital.

About Bridgewater State Hospital:

Bridgewater State Hospital is accredited by the American Correctional Association and the Joint Commission as a behavioral health facility and receives more than 600 admissions per year. The facility is operated by the Department of Correction and CCS.

About Correct Care Solutions:

CCS holds patients at the center of everything we do. CCS promotes rigorous standards of care, nurtures innovation, and values compassionate service. With 11,000 clinicians and professionals in 38 states across the U.S. and Australia, CCS focuses on delivering high quality healthcare. Every day, CCS provides medical and behavioral health services for nearly 270,000 patients located in state hospitals, forensic treatment and civil commitment centers, as well as local, state and federal correctional facilities. Learn more at www.correctcaresolutions.com.  

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Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Marks One-Year Anniversary of Reforms at Bridgewater State Hospital

Office of Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito 

Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, and members of their administration are committed to making Massachusetts the best place to live, work, and raise a family.

Executive Office of Public Safety and Security 

EOPSS is responsible for the policy development and budgetary oversight of its secretariat agencies, independent programs, and several boards which aid in crime prevention, homeland security preparedness, and ensuring the safety of residents and visitors in the Commonwealth.

Massachusetts Department of Mental Health 

The Department of Mental Health, as the State Mental Health Authority, assures and provides access to services and supports to meet the mental health needs of individuals of all ages; enabling them to live, work and participate in their communities.

Governor's Press Office 

Visit the Governor’s Press Office to learn about recent news from the administration, follow our happenings on social media, and for media contact information.

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