The Department of Social and Health Services announced today that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has entered into a second systems improvement agreement (SIA) with Western State Hospital. 

The SIA covers a period from Nov. 2, 2017 to July 2, 2018, during which the hospital will retain CMS certification and continued eligibility for federal funding. CMS and DSHS entered into the original agreement in June 2016 to fix systemic operating problems at the hospital and restore the focus on patient treatment and overall safety.

A CMS survey, conducted in May 2017, was an extremely rigorous review by 23 experienced surveyors. It covered all areas of hospital operations and lasted nearly three weeks. Surveyors provided their feedback to the Department on June 28, 2017 in a Form 2567 Statement of Deficiencies.

WSH was able to show CMS noticeable progress at the hospital, including significant improvements in areas such as active psychiatric treatment. Continuously cited as critically deficient in prior surveys, improvements made by WSH resulted in no CMS report of deficiencies in psychiatric care services, which is a core function for psychiatric hospitals. While the CMS 2567 reflected the great progress made during the past year, it identified areas that still require more time to show full implementation and sustainability.

During the second SIA the hospital will maintain the improvements made to date and continue to address outstanding deficiencies in Conditions of Participation such as improvements in medical treatment; access to specialty medical services; physical plant maintenance and alterations; and violence reduction.  The hospital will also establish more effective Quality Systems to ensure the improvements made in safety and care quality are sustainable into the future.

 “We appreciate the opportunity this SIA provides to continue the transformation at Western State hospital” said Carla Reyes, DSHS Assistant Secretary for Behavioral Health Administration.  “I’d also like to recognize again the support by Governor Inslee and the investments by the Legislature which make this transformation possible”.