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ECMC “Downtown Clinic” Grand Opening

BUFFALO, NY; November 1, 2013-Erie County Medical Center today held an open house ceremony for its new "Downtown Clinic" chemical dependency-treatment facility, now located at 1285 Main Street, across the street from its previous location. 

With new accommodations, the addiction services program has been expanded.  The new facility has 32 clinician rooms, six group rooms and a medical office.  It provides for 25,000 visits annually with an average patient caseload per month of 340.  The clinic offers outpatient substance abuse services under all major insurance plans.  Services include a five-day per week stabilization group.  

The clinic employs a multi-disciplinary team of 19, including a clinic psychiatrist, psychiatric nurse practitioner, registered nurse, addictions counselors, a Spanish-speaking counselor and support staff. 

"The clinic's focus is on chemical dependency outpatient counseling by a multi-disciplinary team, as well as other very focused and patient-centric offerings," said Richard C. Cleland, ECMC's chief operating officer. 

Roxanne Welsh, CRC, CASAC, program manager of ECMC's chemical dependency outpatient clinics, said the new office utilizes treatment services at ECMC's Emergency Department and detoxification and inpatient rehabilitation services as needed in determining and implementing the best treatment plan for individual clients. 

Other new offerings include medication-assisted treatment, with Dr. Nalini Misir directing a comprehensive suboxone program that includes suboxone group counseling, physician visits and individual counseling; an Hispanic track of treatment, with a Spanish-speaking counselor; co-occurring disorder treatment, that includes group counseling and scheduled visits with Tom Chapin, psychiatric nurse practitioner. 

The new clinic, on Main near Bryant Street, also has the following:

  • Improved connectivity to ECMC, featuring real-time immediate registration and centralized scheduling, both designed to decrease insurance denials;
  • Faster documentation, label printing, access to registration forms and communication with ECMC's lab;
  • TV, computer, and projector-equipped group room for increased staff training opportunities;
  • Security updates, with numerous onsite cameras feeding to ECMC and call buttons in all group rooms;
  • Locking clinic doors so patients can only access waiting room/rest rooms, requiring staff escort into clinic areas;
  • Increased privacy for patients with two toxicity-treatment restrooms;
  • Secure staff parking;
  • Expanded physician office/exam rooms, along with increased physician hours to facilitate increase in suboxone referrals. 

The expanded clinic is operating underan existing ECMC license. 

The new clinic also has a brighter, more welcoming environment for staff and patients, with new surroundings, furniture and televisions in waiting rooms for patients.  

The clinic accepts most major health care insurance plans and has offsite fiscal services staff to assist with Medicaid applications as needed. 

In June 2012, Great Lakes Health announced that New York's Health Department approved a $15 million grant to help ECMC and Kaleida Health consolidate mental health and drug dependency treatment in one $25 million Regional Behavioral Health Center of Excellence at ECMC.  That building is currently rising on the ECMC campus and is due to open in March 2014.   

The new center is a physician-driven collaboration between ECMC and Kaleida that will create a state-of-the-art, comprehensive psychiatric emergency program and new inpatient facilities to serve mental health and chemically dependent patients in Western New York. 

The consolidated model will combine the resources of the ECMC and Buffalo General Medical Center behavioral health programs and create a single, 180-bed inpatient psychiatric program.  It will also continue ECMC's current 22 detoxification beds and 20 inpatient chemical dependency rehabilitation beds. 

The plan also calls for continuing clinics in Lancaster and Kenmore, in addition to the Main Street facility.   

The new center also expands ECMC's current emergency behavioral health facilities from 6,500 square feet to 18,000 square feet.  The integrated model will combine the current outpatient volumes of 44,300 annual visits at ECMC and Kaleida's 68,829 annual visits with services provided onsite at ECMC and at its community-based locations.  

Currently, ECMC has 132 licensed inpatient psychiatric beds with 2,297 discharges in 2011 and 57 inpatient rehabilitation/detoxification beds with 1,621 discharges in 2011.  Buffalo General Medical Center has 91 licensed inpatient beds with 2,307 annual discharges. 

This consolidation represents the third major initiative of the Great Lakes Health System of Western New York to merge the services of ECMC and Kaleida.  The first created the Gates Vascular Institute on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus in collaboration with the University at Buffalo and the second being the Regional Center of Excellence for Transplantation & Kidney Care on ECMC's campus, both HEAL-funded initiatives to restructure and right size the region's health care.  ECMC last winter also opened Terrace View, a new $103 million, 390-bed nursing home that replaced the county home in Alden. 

MORE ABOUT ECMCThe ECMC Corporation includes an advanced academic medical center (ECMC) with 550 inpatient beds, on- and off-campus health centers, more than 30 outpatient specialty care services and Terrace View, a 390-bed long-term care facility.  ECMC is the regional center for trauma, burn care, behavioral health services, transplantation, and rehabilitation and is a major teaching facility for the University at Buffalo.  Most ECMC physicians, dentists and pharmacists are dedicated faculty members of the university and/or members of a private practice plan.  More Western New York residents are choosing ECMC for exceptional patient care and patient experiences-the difference between healthcare and true careTM. 


Tom Quatroche at 716-898-5503 -or- tquatroc@ecmc.edu

Joe Cirillo at 716-898-4300 -or- jcirillo@ecmc.edu





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