Magazine article Developments in Mental Health Law

DOJ Settles ADA Investigation of Delaware Psychiatric Center

Magazine article Developments in Mental Health Law

DOJ Settles ADA Investigation of Delaware Psychiatric Center

Article excerpt

The United States Department of Justice ("DOJ") entered into a Settlement Agreement with the State of Delaware in July 2011 resolving its investigation under the Americans with Disabilities Act of the Delaware Psychiatric Center, the State's only state-run facility for persons with mental illness. United States v. Delaware, Civil Action No. 11-591-LPS (July 6, 2011). The Settlement Agreement followed DOJ's on-site inspections of the hospital and community programs conducted in May 2008 and August 2010 and the issuance of its investigative "findings" letter on November, 9, 2010

The Agreement requires Delaware to implement programs and services to prevent institutionalization of at-risk individuals by offering community-based services in accordance with a strict 5-year implementation schedule beginning with the date of the Agreement and ending July 1, 2016. The target population to be served under the agreement includes individuals with serious and persistent mental illness who are at highest risk of institutionalization whose symptoms manifested in the last year, resulted in functional impairment which substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities and has episodic, recurrent or persistent features. Priority for receipt of services must be given to people currently at Delaware Psychiatric Center, including those on forensic status, people discharged from the Delaware Psychiatric Center in the last two years, people admitted to private institutions for mental disease ("IMDs"), people who have had an emergency room visit in the last year due to mental illness or substance abuse, people who have been arrested, incarcerated or had encounters with law enforcement in the last year due to mental illness, people who have been homeless a full year or had four or more episodes of homelessness in the last three years, and people who have requested services or who have been referred for services by others in the last year.

Services provided must be implemented statewide and be linguistically and culturally competent, solution-focused and recovery-oriented. Mandated services include crisis services, including a crisis hotline, mobile crisis teams, crisis walk-in centers, crisis stabilization services, and crisis apartments, intensive support services, including assertive community treatment, intensive case management, and case management with specific caseload limits specified, housing, including supported housing, supported employment and rehabilitation services, and family and peer supports.

Each individual now in or being admitted to the Delaware Psychiatric Center or an IMD must have a transition plan developed through a person-centered planning process that identifies barriers to placement and steps that will be taken to address the barriers. A central specialized transition team must also be established to focus on individuals when teams have identified that the person is to remain in the Psychiatric Center or an IMD or placed in a less integrated setting, such a congregate living or a nursing home, or who have intensive behavioral or medical needs. Once a plan has been developed, the person must be discharged within 30 days. For individuals on forensic status, the State must educate judges on the recommended placement and services. All individuals must be reassessed with 30 days of the signing of this Agreement and the transitional and specialized teams must be in place within 60 days. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.