Competency Restoration Facilities

 

The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) operates residential treatment facilities where criminal defendants now in jail or in the community can receive competency restoration services. Defendants ordered into competency restoration services will be assessed through a centralized screening process to determine which of the locations best matches their needs for recovery.

Transporting Patients

State law gives the Secretary of DSHS the discretion for placement for competency restoration. See RCW 10.77.084(1)(b), 10.77.086(1)(a)(i) and 10.77.088(1)(a). Transportation for patients coming from jails will be arranged by the sending county. Patients coming to the alternate site from a state psychiatric hospital will be transported by DSHS.

RCW 10.77.078 states that jails must transport a defendant to competency restoration sites within one day of an offer of admission and must provide a defendant's medical clearance to the state hospital admissions staff. In order to make efficient use of the new facilities, and place defendants in the most appropriate facility, DSHS requests that jails work with admissions staff in screening individuals for placement.

Visitation from Counsel

Just like the state hospitals, attorneys are able to visit patients at the facilities or communicate by telephone. Plans are underway to develop a videoconferencing system that would enable attorneys to be present via video for face-to-face evaluations by an evaluator.

For questions regarding general questions or admissions and transport for specific individuals, please contact OFMHSwebsite@dshs.wa.gov.