Washington’s Department of Social and Health Services reported this morning that inspectors from Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have begun their re-survey at Western State Hospital in Lakewood.

The examination of many facets of the publicly-funded mental health evaluation and treatment facility will determine whether the hospital can retain its certification and remain eligible for nearly $65 million in annual federal funding.

This week’s inspection is the result of an agreed Systems Improvement Agreement between DSHS and CMS that was signed in June 2016, after the feds found several deficiencies at the 857-bed hospital. The state was given up to 13 months to correct those issues.

“Staff has worked hard to improve the quality of care and safety for patients, staff and the community,” said DSHS’ Behavioral Health Administration Assistant Secretary Carla Reyes. “While it took years of staffing and resource challenges to get where we were, the team is dedicated to making all of the necessary improvements today and going forward.” 

Reyes added that the CMS surveyors’ return to Western to observe improvements already made is the next step in a journey to transform the hospital. They are expected to spend several days conducting the hospital survey and DSHS will be notified of the results at a later date.