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Published on Friday, April 10, 2015

Bill requiring security of violent offenders in hospitals still on the move

SSB 5593, Sen. Bruce Dammeier (R-Puyallup), would require law enforcement to accompany violent and sexual offenders brought to a hospital while in their custody.  The bill also addresses the cost of inmate medical care. This bill is the result of negotiations and compromise between hospitals and law enforcement to address concerns of both. AWC is supportive of this compromise measure.

SSB 5593:

  • Outlines requirements for supervision of persons who are in custody for a violent or sex offense while those persons are receiving hospital care.
  • Requires expedited emergency room treatment of supervised inmates, subject to triage practices and legal requirements regarding screening and treatment.
  • Allows screening for Medicaid eligibility of jail inmates at the time of booking, and registration of eligible inmates.
  • Identifies a payment rate structure for inpatient, outpatient, and ancillary services that are rendered to jail inmates. Unless other rates are agreed to by the governing unit and the hospital, the hospital must accept as payment in full by the governing units the applicable facility's percent of allowed charges rate or fee schedule as determined, maintained, and posted by the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

SSB 5593 saw executive action March 26 in the House Judiciary Committee. It has been referred to the House Rules Committee.

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