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Office of Mental Health

Rochester Psychiatric Center
Rochester Regional Forensic Unit

The primary mission of the Rochester Regional Forensic Unit (RRFU) is to provide inpatient psychiatric treatment to mentally ill individuals who are currently involved or were involved with the Criminal Justice System. RRFU is located within the Rochester Psychiatric Center.  The unit houses 55 patients.  Despite the necessary security on this unit, every effort is made to ensure a therapeutic, clean and safe environment that has as much privacy as possible for patients.

There are four basic principles which form the Treatment Philosophy of the RRFU. These principles are:

  1. The program is patient centered (patients come first).  This principle means that everything that we do on the Unit must be in the best interest of the patients under our care.  This includes our Treatment decisions, program planning, and our interactions with patients.
  2. This Program is based upon the belief that a forensic population can benefit from psychiatric treatment.  That is, that they can change and make progress towards the resolution of their problems.  Secondly, they have a right to be treated with dignity, respect, and to receive the best psychiatric care available.
  3. We provide empirically validated psychiatric services to patients who are involuntarily mandated to this unit. The patients are mandated because of their mental illness, dangerousness, impulsivity, aggression, addictions and antisocial behaviors.  We believe that there is no conflict involved in the concepts of security and treatment.  Rather, we believe that these two concepts can be fused into an overall treatment approach.
  4. The Forensic Unit is committed to the Multidisciplinary Teamwork Approach.  In this program we bring together a number of people with a wide variety of backgrounds, disciplines and training.  The Treatment Team consists of Forensic Psychiatrists, Medical Physicians, Psychologists, Social Workers, Registered Nurses, Recreational Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Rehabilitation Counselors, Dieticians, Pharmacists, Security Hospital Treatment Assistants, RPC Safety Officers and Monroe County Deputy Sheriffs. Not one of these people can be the complete expert for any given patient.

RRFU admits patients subject to the provisions of Section 508 Corrections Law, Section 730 Criminal Procedure Law and Section 330.20 CPL.  The following is an explanation of the treatment goals of each of these legal categories:

  1. Section 508 Corrections Law - Allows for the commitment of pretrial or pre-sentenced detainees of county jails within our catchment area.  The treatment goal is rapid stabilization of acute reactive states or of acute psychotic episodes.  Discharge is usually back to the county jail of origin with follow-up treatment provided by the local county mental health department.
  2. Section 730 Criminal Procedure Law - Allows for the hospitalization of individuals who have been found not competent to stand trial.  Patients in this category are usually admitted on a temporary order of observation or on a commitment order.  The primary treatment goal for patients admitted under the provisions of this law is to restore the patient to competency as quickly as possible.  Patients under this category are always discharged back to the county jail of origin with follow up provided by the county mental health departments.
  3. Section 330.20 Criminal Procedure Law - Patients admitted in this category have been found not responsible by reason of mental illness or defect.  For patients who are admitted on an Order of Commitment, our treatment goal is to evaluate and treat their dangerous mental disorder.  Our long-range goal is to prepare these patients for transfer to a civil unit or nonsecure unit as soon as it is determined that they are no longer a danger to themselves or others because of their mental illness.  For patients who are admitted pursuant to an Order for Examination, our responsibility is to assess their dangerousness and report back to the referring court.

Regional Forensic Unit Family Handbook (PDF)
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For further information regarding any of these programs, please call (585) 241-1200.

Comments or questions about the information on this page can be directed to the Rochester Psychiatric Center Administration.