St. Joe's was a pioneer in psychiatric care

January 06, 2012

As a member of the community that St. Joseph Medical Center serves, as one whose family has received care at St Joseph, and as a former employee, I appreciate the recent commentary by Archbishop Edwin F. O'Brien ("St. Joseph Medical Center: A Catholic tradition of reverence, integrity, compassion and excellence," Jan. 1).

It has been with great sadness that I have observed the reputation of the hospital being diminished. As the archbishop points out, its history has been a proud one focused on providing quality care for the people of Baltimore. He acknowledged the many areas of outstanding care, but one was overlooked.

Since the 1960s, SJMC has provided care to that portion of our population that is so often underserved, those with psychiatric issues. It was one of the first community hospitals to establish a psychiatric unit, and since that time has provided a range of psychiatric services. Let us not forget these needs.

While there will be changes at St. Joseph, I am sure that the compassionate care that the hospital has always been known for, will not change.

Clare Miller

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