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*** CHANGE IN 2024 *** (SEE 5271-S.SL) ***
The definitions in this section apply throughout this chapter unless the context clearly requires otherwise.
(1) "Department" means the department of health.
(2) "Elopement" means any situation in which an admitted patient of a psychiatric hospital who is cognitively, physically, mentally, emotionally, and/or chemically impaired wanders, walks, runs away, escapes, or otherwise leaves a psychiatric hospital or the grounds of a psychiatric hospital prior to the patient's scheduled discharge unsupervised, unnoticed, and without the staff's knowledge.
(3) "Establishment" and "institution" mean:
(a) Every private or county or municipal hospital, including public hospital districts, sanatoriums, homes, psychiatric hospitals, residential treatment facilities, or other places receiving or caring for any person with mental illness, mentally incompetent person, or chemically dependent person; and
(b) Beginning January 1, 2019, facilities providing pediatric transitional care services.
(4) "Immediate jeopardy" means a situation in which the psychiatric hospital's noncompliance with one or more statutory or regulatory requirements has placed the health and safety of patients in its care at risk for serious injury, serious harm, serious impairment, or death.
(5) "Pediatric transitional care services" means short-term, temporary, health and comfort services for drug exposed infants according to the requirements of this chapter and provided in an establishment licensed by the department of health.
(6) "Psychiatric hospital" means an establishment caring for any person with mental illness or substance use disorder excluding acute care hospitals licensed under chapter 70.41 RCW, state psychiatric hospitals established under chapter 72.23 RCW, and residential treatment facilities as defined in this section.
(7) "Residential treatment facility" means an establishment in which twenty-four hour on-site care is provided for the evaluation, stabilization, or treatment of residents for substance use, mental health, co-occurring disorders, or for drug exposed infants.
(8) "Secretary" means the secretary of the department of health.
(9) "Technical assistance" means the provision of information on the state laws and rules applicable to the regulation of psychiatric hospitals, the process to apply for a license, and methods and resources to avoid or address compliance problems. Technical assistance does not include assistance provided under chapter 43.05 RCW.
(10) "Trained caregiver" means a noncredentialed, unlicensed person trained by the establishment providing pediatric transitional care services to provide hands-on care to drug exposed infants. Caregivers may not provide medical care to infants and may only work under the supervision of an appropriate health care professional.


Reviser's note: The definitions in this section have been alphabetized pursuant to RCW 1.08.015(2)(k).
FindingsIntentEffective date2020 c 115: See notes following RCW 71.12.700.
FindingsIntent2017 c 263: "The legislature finds that more than twelve thousand infants born in Washington each year have been prenatally exposed to opiates, methamphetamines, and other drugs. Prenatal drug exposure frequently results in infants suffering from neonatal abstinence syndrome and its accompanying withdrawal symptoms after birth. Withdrawal symptoms may include sleep problems, excessive crying, tremors, seizures, poor feeding, fever, generalized convulsions, vomiting, diarrhea, and hyperactive reflexes. Consequently, the legislature finds that drug exposed infants have unique medical needs and benefit from specialized health care that addresses their withdrawal symptoms. Specialized care for infants experiencing neonatal abstinence syndrome is based on the individual needs of the infant and includes: Administration of intravenous fluids and drugs such as morphine; personalized, hands-on therapeutic care such as gentle rocking, reduction in noise and lights, and swaddling; and frequent high-calorie feedings.
The legislature further finds that drug exposed infants often require hospitalization which burdens hospitals and hospital staff who either have to increase staffing levels or require current staff to take on additional duties to administer the specialized care needed by drug exposed infants.
The legislature further finds that drug exposed infants benefit from early and consistent family involvement in their care, and families thrive when they are provided the opportunity, skills, and training to help them participate in their child's care.
The legislature further finds that infants with neonatal abstinence syndrome often can be treated in a nonhospital clinic setting where they receive appropriate medical and nonmedical care for their symptoms. The legislature, therefore, intends to encourage alternatives to continued hospitalization for drug exposed infants, including the continuation and development of pediatric transitional care services that provide short-term medical care as well as training and assistance to caregivers in order to support the transition from hospital to home for drug exposed infants." [ 2017 c 263 § 1.]
PurposeIntentSeverability1977 ex.s. c 80: See notes following RCW 4.16.190.
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