How can someone be referred for services at WSH?

Patients must come to WSH by court order. 

Civil Commitment (RCW 71.05) -- After a mental health professional  evaluate a person with a mental illness, they have the authority to detain him/her to an evaluation and treatment center for up to 72 hours.  If further detainment is needed, they will petition the court.  The court will hold a hearing where a decision is made whether or not to admit the person to the state hospital.   Patients do not come to WSH until after receiving a court order for treatment of their mental illness.

Criminal Commitment (RCW 10.77) – When a person has been arrested and suspected of crime, a judge can request a competency evaluation to determine if they are capable of assisting in their own defense.  The evaluation can be done either in jail or at WSH.  Sometimes a person needs treatment to become competent to stand trial.  When this occurs, the person is admitted to WSH for a longer period of time.  If they are found to be “non-restorable,” their criminal charges can be dropped and they can be civilly committed to the hospital.  Other times, people are found not-guilty-by-reason of insanity.  These patients can stay at WSH for up to the amount of time of what would have been a maximum sentence for their crime.

With various forms of treatment and medication, all patients at WSH are working towards recovery and eventually reintegrating into a productive life in their home community.