Washington legislative panel recommends improvements in state mental care system - Sovereign Health Group
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Washington legislative panel recommends improvements in state mental care system
01-20-17 Category: Advocacy, Mental Health

A bipartisan committee of Washington legislators recently sent a letter to Gov. Jay Inslee with recommendations on how to improve the state’s beleaguered mental health care system. The Select Committee on Quality in State Hospitals, comprising eight members, outlined several problems faced by two state hospitals in Washington, including:

  • Discharge delays
  • Long waiting time for inpatient treatment at state hospitals
  • Workforce shortage

Further, the Western State Hospital in Lakewood, the state’s largest psychiatric center, has a long history of troubles. A report released by the Washington Department of Social and Health Services in 2016 described a “culture of helplessness” among staff and patients who felt neglected, among other concerns.

Inslee’s budget proposals for 2017 to 2019, released in December 2016, had called for an additional $300 million for the state’s mental health system. Some of the recommendations were increasing staff at psychiatric hospitals, adding community resources and creating patient-centered arrangements.

Mental health care available outside hospitals

According to the nonprofit mental health advocacy group Mental Health America, the majority of mentally ill people do not need hospitalization though at times it proves useful because of the close monitoring by professionals.

However, the kind of care available in a hospital setting is also accessible outside hospitals. Sovereign Health has four southern California locations that offer a range of levels of care, from 24/7 residential treatment to outpatient care, to fit each patient’s need

Patients at Sovereign live within the community in comfortable, safe and quiet residential areas while receiving effective care. Our compassionate and professional staff work closely with the patients, using both traditional and experiential forms of treatment to ensure that every patient has the best chance of a holistic recovery. Call our 24/7 helpline for more information.

About the author 

Brian Moore is a staff writer and graphic designer for Sovereign Health. A 20-year veteran of the newspaper industry, he writes articles and creates graphics across Sovereign’s portfolio of marketing and content products. Brian enjoys music, bicycling and playing the tuba, which he’s done with varying degrees of success for over 25 years. For more information and other inquiries about this media, contact the author and designer at news@sovhealth.com.

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