KEENE, N.H. — Officials say an inpatient psychiatric unit at a Keene hospital is closing because of staffing issues.

New Hampshire Public Radio reports ( ) the move at Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene takes effect July 1. Officials say a psychiatrist shortage has curbed their ability to treat patients.

The unit is licensed to treat a dozen adults patients and six adolescents. But staffing issues have meant they’ve only had an average of three or four adults per day.

Hospital CEO Don Caruso says Cheshire spent three years trying to recruit psychiatrists. He says the health care industry needs to train more psychiatrists and increase reimbursements to providers to attract and retain more practitioners.

Thirty-three employees will be offered severance packages. Some may be reassigned in the hospital.

Information from: WEVO-FM,

VIAThe Associated Press
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.