Psychiatric Crisis Center Opens In Burlington

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In Burlington, a ribbon was cut Monday morning on a new psychiatric crisis center.

The center is called "851 Pine Street," and is operated by the Howard Center mental health agency.

Officials say the new facility provides six beds for people who have a psychiatric crisis. The goal is to keep them from needing emergency room care at a hospital.

Advocates say there’s a greater need for those beds since Tropical Storm Irene forced the state to close the Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury.

The new building will also be a "step-down facility," which means patients who are released from a hospital can use it as they make the transition from in-patient care to the community.

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