Opinion: Safety of staff, patients will be our focus at API

Some concerns have been expressed over the privatization of API.

Wellpath and I take our responsibility to the people being served at Alaska Psychiatric Institute very seriously. I have worked for Wellpath for many years; however, the majority of my work history has been in state behavioral health, so I understand the political issues surrounding public and private service provisions.

At Wellpath, we treat people in our care with the dignity and respect they deserve because we care about them as individuals with lives, families and significant others. Even more importantly, we understand the toll that behavioral health issues take on the individual, their families and communities.

Currently, Wellpath manages six psychiatric treatment centers, similar to API, across the United States. These treatment centers are independently accredited, and our hospitals rank among the top third of all U.S. accredited psychiatric hospitals.

Some concerns have been expressed over the privatization of API. The truth is that the safety of staff and persons served will be our focus at API, and our team is already working with the quality caregivers at API to improve systems, processes and training. Our mission is to provide quality care to every person served with compassion, collaboration and innovation. We can do this work because we provide staff the training and support they need to be safe and effective.

The bottom line is that API has serious issues, and we are humbled by the opportunity to partner with the staff and state to fix them. We are confident the community will see measurable improvements.

Kevin Huckshorn,

Ph.D, RN, MSN, ICADC Senior Consultant, Wellpath


My Turns and Letters to the Editor represent the view of the author, not the view of the Juneau Empire.