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Ann Marie T. Sullivan, M.D., Acting Commissioner
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Letter to Colleagues, July 2009

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Office of Mental Health Letterhead

July 13, 2009

Dear Colleague:

This OMH Practice Advisory addresses the use of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) for individuals under the age of 18 years. The Office of Mental Health is distributing it as a directive for all State-operated psychiatric facilities, and as a practice advisory to other mental health care providers in New York State.

The New York State Office of Mental Health is issuing this practice advisory to provide proper safeguards on the use of ECT for youth, while recognizing its use in those rare instances where other treatments have proven ineffective. More information about the use of ECT in youth is contained in the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry's Practice Parameter on the Use of ECT in Youth.

We hope this guidance proves clinically useful and we welcome your distributing this advisory to your colleagues.


Michael F. Hogan, Ph.D.

Stewart Gabel, M.D.
Medical Director, OMH Div.
of Children and Family Services

Lloyd I. Sederer M.D.
OMH Medical Director

John B. Allen Jr.
Special Assistant to the