Gov. Sandoval Releases Statement on 'Patient Dumping' Allegation - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Gov. Sandoval Releases Statement on 'Patient Dumping' Allegations

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From Office of Governor Brian Sandoval

Governor Brian Sandoval today issued the following statement regarding Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital in Las Vegas:

"In early March, it came to my attention that in at least one instance, discharge policies and procedures were not followed at Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital in Las Vegas.  In light of this information, my Administration took immediate and voluntary action and initiated three separate investigations.  As a result of our investigations, disciplinary actions have been taken and a corrective plan of action was put into place at Rawson-Neal.  The new policy, which was put in place weeks ago, provides additional oversight to ensure that discharge and transportation policies are followed correctly. 

"Let me be clear, improperly discharging one patient is one patient too many.  I take the concerns regarding Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital very seriously and it is not the policy of the State of Nevada to engage in ‘patient dumping' as been alleged by some. Rather, patients have a right, and a desire, to return home to their friends and families.
"Throughout the investigative process, I received regular briefings from the Director of the Department of Health and Human Services and last Friday, I toured Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital and spoke extensively with the hospital Administrator.  Yesterday, I briefed the leadership of the Nevada Legislature on the investigative process and what these investigations have found to date. 

"My Administration has been and will continue to be open and transparent on whatever the findings of these investigations are.  The state of Nevada has taken extra steps to ensure that when a patient is treated and released, there is a proper plan in place.  Rawson-Neal is safe, modern, and has a five-star accreditation. Further, I know it is the goal of the health care professionals at Rawson-Neal to provide the best care possible.  I am confident that with the new strengthened discharge procedures in place Rawson-Neal will continue to treat all patients with dignity and a high standard of care."

From the Office of Governor Brian Sandoval

A few days ago the Sacramento Bee newspaper reported that Nevada's primary state psychiatric hospital has transported more than 1,500 patients by Greyhound bus over a 5-year period to various cities nationwide.

The issue has been under scrutiny since February when one Rawson-Neal patient turned up suicidal and confused at a homeless complex in Sacramento, where he knew no one and had never been before.

Nevada Department of Health and Human Services Director Mike Willden categorically denies the state of Nevada is "patient dumping" due to budget cuts and says he's offended by that characterization.

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