One of the Kansas City area’s leading mental health organizations is cutting services for more than 800 adults and children.
Wyandot Inc., an umbrella organization for four nonprofit agencies in Kansas City, Kan., said Wednesday that it would need to cut services due to revenue losses and Gov. Sam Brownback’s decision earlier this year to reduce Medicaid reimbursements by 4 percent.
“I’ve been with the organization since 1993,” said Randy Callstrom, president and CEO of Wyandot Inc. “And this is really the first time where we are going to have to learn to have to say, ‘I’m sorry, we are going to have to refer you to someone else in the community to meet your needs.’”
Callstrom said the cuts will mainly reduce the availability of psychiatric services.
He’s hopeful that clients with less critical needs will continue to receive help from primary care providers but said the loss of established relationships with mental health providers may be difficult.
“That relationship is so critical to a treatment process,” Callstrom said. “Having to change treatment providers is going to be disruptive to our clients.”
More than 600 adults and 200 children will lose services.
Wyandot Inc. provides counseling, crisis intervention and housing assistance for more than 4,500 adults and around 3,000 children, mostly in Wyandotte County.
The organization will eliminate seven full-time positions and 12 part-time positions and leave 18 job vacancies unfilled.
Wyandot Inc. is the parent company of Wyandot Center, which is Wyandotte County’s designated community mental health center and operates Rainbow Services Inc.; Paces, which addresses emotional and behavioral problems among children and adolescents; Kim Wilson Housing Inc., which helps develop housing options for the homeless; and City Vision, which promotes sustainable economic development in the urban core of Kansas City, Kan.
— Alex Smith is a reporter for KCUR.