2020 DSHS News Releases

Welcome to DSHS' news releases for 2020. You may search by keyword and release number.

To read archived news releases, please choose the appropriate year below:

Eastern State Hospital names Chief Nursing Officer

Jul 24 2020

DSHS Office of Communications, Kelly Von Holtz, 360-902-7739

MEDICAL LAKE – The Department of Social and Health Services is pleased to announce that Jayme Skehan, RN, MSN, DNP has accepted the position of Chief Nursing Officer at the agency’s Eastern State Hospital.

Skehan may be new to this position, but she is not new to Eastern. She came to the hospital in 2017 through a consulting firm as the Interim Quality Director. That year, she assisted the facility in maintaining its accreditation by the ...read the full news release


OLYMPIA - The Department of Social and Health Services received a federal grant of nearly $890,000 to provide work-based job training for low-income, unemployed older Washingtonians. This grant will help prepare hundreds of older adults in Washington state for a post-COVID-19 economy.

DSHS will use the money to provide remote training opportunities and job preparation and coaching. Training will focus on gaining and retaining employment, digital literacy and technical ...read the full news release

DSHS provides Automatic Voter Registration for clients

Jul 14 2020

DSHS Office of Communications, Norah West, 360-902-7833

OLYMPIA -- Thanks to Automatic Voter Registration, or AVR, the Department of Social and Health Services can now register eligible clients to vote automatically when they apply for benefits.

"At DSHS, our mission is to transform lives and part of how we do that is by being good stewards of the public’s resources," said agency secretary Cheryl Strange. "In the case of Automatic Voter Registration, we’re making efficient use of existing IT programs, fulfilling our state and federal legal ...read the full news release

OLYMPIA — Washington state has marked one year of progress in implementing a federal judge’s orders stemming from the Trueblood vs. DSHS lawsuit.

Trueblood challenges unconstitutional delays in competency evaluations and restoration services. The state has been ordered to provide court-ordered competency evaluations within 14 days and competency restoration services within seven days.

“Through ...read the full news release

DSHS to furlough employees and close offices one day a week through July 20

Jun 25 2020

DSHS Office of Communications, Chris Wright, (360) 628-1043


Agency will then furlough employees one day a month through November

OLYMPIA – In order to comply with the furloughs ordered last week by Governor Jay Inslee, the Department of Social and Health Services will close its offices across the state starting on Monday, June 29 and continue to do so each Monday through July 20. During this time, ...read the full news release