Nevada gave 1,500 Mental Patients one-way Greyhound tickets to other states without food, medicine, housing, or treatment arrangements

April 23, 2013 by  
Filed under Americas

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – San Francisco’s city attorney said on Monday he has opened an investigation into recent newspaper reports that a Nevada mental hospital was illegally busing hundreds of newly discharged psychiatric patients to California and other states.

In a letter to the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, City Attorney Dennis Herrera cited a Sacramento Bee investigative series documenting what it described as rampant “patient dumping” by the Rawson Neal Psychiatric Hospital in Las Vegas.

The Bee reported that the state-run facility has, since 2008, discharged some 1,500 patients – some of them still mentally ill and indigent – with one-way Greyhound bus tickets to out-of-state destinations without adequate provisions for food, medication, housing or medical treatment.

The report found that one third of those patients were sent to neighboring California, the bulk of them arriving in Los Angeles, while 36 ended up in San Francisco.

“Assuming the reports are true, Nevada’s practice of psychiatric ‘patient dumping’ is shockingly inhumane and illegal,” Herrera said in a statement.

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