Tuesday, May 22 , 2018, 12:54 pm | Mostly Cloudy 64º


Letter to the Editor: ADMHS Provides Professional, Quality Care for Patients, Families

I am writing in appreciation and support of the high-quality psychiatric care that my son — and our family — receives at the Psychiatric Health Facility and through Santa Barbara County’s Mental Health outpatient services for the past eight years.

Our family was so confused and worried when our son suddenly started exhibiting signs of mental illness, right after his 18th birthday. Until then, he was a thriving young man with every indication he would lead a typical, successful and happy life.

We were so fortunate to find ourselves in the “medical home” of a doctor at ADMHS who was consistently respectful and professional with both my son and our family. Even when my son exhibited very antisocial behaviors, the doctor empathized with and treated him as the intelligent person he is. The doctor showed that he valued me as the expert on my own child, and I in turn valued him as a competent expert on the treatment of mental illness.

During the past eight years, my son has been in and out of the PHF many times. Every time he is there, I visit as often as possible and see firsthand that he receives wonderful care. All of the staff at the PHF — doctors, social workers, even receptionists — show that they truly care about my son and his recovery. Through my numerous observations, it is quite evident that the PHF embraces its own culture of caring for all of Santa Barbara County’s stakeholders.

Social workers at the PHF helped me understand these new, daunting systems and calmed me. They deftly navigate a multifaceted team of professionals through a complex legal-social-medical process to ensure my son is treated as effectively, fairly and swiftly as possible.

Today, my son is secured by a safety net of conservatorship and a full range of social services. He is getting healthier every day. I have been assured he will be able to “come home” to psychiatrically assisted housing here in Santa Barbara County, as soon as he is well enough.

I believe that true healing will only happen within the context of warm relationships and nurturing environments. The services we receive from Santa Barbara County’s Mental Health Services provide just that.

Lorraine Neenan
Santa Ynez

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