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Local Shelters Grapple With Patient Dumping

How do shelters and social service providers handle patient dumping? Employees at the Shade Tree and other shelters say they routinely receive patients who have been discharged from local hospitals and psychiatric facilities they don't have the ability to care for. Instead, they often have to send these patients back to the hospital. Hospitals are under pressure to open beds for medical emergencies. Is there any way to stop this revolving door that often affects patients with psychiatric conditions?


Representatives from Spring Mountain Treatment Center declined to be on the program, but this statement was provided by CEO Darryl Dubroca:

Spring Mountain Treatment Center is one of four private psychiatric facilities located within Southern Nevada.  Opened since 2001, Spring Mountain Treatment Center services individuals experiencing an acute mental health crisis and presenting as a danger to themselves or others.

With over 3,000 patient discharges from our facility each year, we pride ourselves on offering a rigorous discharge process which includes a comprehensive follow-up treatment plan. The discharge plan integrates the patient’s family/guardian in their continuity of care to ensure the individual’s safe return to the community. Unfortunately, there are times when patients do not adhere to their discharge plan developed by the facility’s treatment team, although compliance is emphasized as a key component to the patient’s recovery.  

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Due to strict patient confidentiality and privacy requirements, Spring Mountain Treatment Center is prohibited from discussing the specific details of any individual case or discharge. Spring Mountain Treatment Center is committed to its mission of providing high quality treatment programs and services that will improve the overall health and well-being of its patients and their families.


Thank you,


Darryl Dubroca



Roxanne Lee, case management manager, The Shade Tree

Dr. Richard Elliott, professor, Mercer School of Medicine and School of Law

Marla McDade Williams, deputy administrator, Division of Public and Behavioral Health

Friday, February 21, 2014

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