Sunday, December 14, 2008

Massachusetts to close four of six institutions for people with developmental disabilities

From The AP:

BOSTON -- The Patrick administration plans to close 4 of the state's six institutions for people with developmental disabilities, including the Fernald Developmental Center in Waltham.

The Department of Mental Retardation says about 316 people -- including 180 from Fernald -- will be transferred to community settings or 1 of the two remaining facilities over the next four years.

Secretary of Health and Human Services JudyAnn Bigby says she knows the closings will be difficult for some families, who went to federal court to try to keep Fernard open.

Gov. Deval Patrick has argued that closing the facilities will free up resources to better serve the department's other 32,000 clients who receive community-based services.

The state will also shut down the Glavin Regional Center in Shrewsbury, the Monson Developmental Center in Palmer and the Templeton Developmental Center in Baldwinville.

The Wrentham Developmental Center and the Hogan Regional Center in Hathorne will remain open.