The Reflections Chemical Dependency Program will close its doors on April 1st following the Eastern Niagara Hospital announcing its shutdown in June.
A registered nurse of the Reflections Chemical Dependency Program, Kyle Lambalzer, expresses to 7 News reporter Yoselin Person that the closure has been a surprise.
“We’re losing our community hospital. It wasn’t necessarily a shock,” Lambalzer says. “We’ve known about it for a while, but it was a shock when we got a date saying June 17th is the last day.”
Lambalzer says he and ten other registered nurses are working around the clock making sure his clients aren’t feeling the impact.
“Everything we’ve done for them is making sure they have a safe place to go,” he says. “They’re well cared for at the next step, and that’s been our total focus.”
The 1199 SEIU administrative organizer, Cathy DiFlavio represents the registered nurses, says the shutdown of the hospital is devastating.
“In the last three years that we went through COVID, we’ve seen an increase in addiction and mental health, so that is needed much more now,” she says. “And we don’t have a lot of these facilities, so to see one of them closing, it’s not good for the community, especially in the community of Lockport.”
DiFlavio says the RNs will still be entitled to have any wages and vacation time.
“And that has given the registered nurses some sense of security that when they work through all of this that they still will receive those benefits,” DiFlavio says.
Meantime, Kyle Lambalzer hopes to land a position with another provider.
“It won’t be ten minutes from home,” he says. “It’ll be a little further, but that’s okay.”
Lambalzer strongly advises those struggling with addiction to get help.
"Get to a detox. Get to an impatient if you need it,” he says. “Talk to your family. Find help. Help is out there, just find it."
Below are links to facilities that provide substance abuse services:
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