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Legislative findings.

(1) The Washington state legislature finds and declares that a reporting system is needed to protect state hospital patients from abuse. Instances of nonaccidental injury, neglect, death, sexual abuse, and cruelty to such patients have occurred, and in the instance where such a patient is deprived of his or her right to conditions of minimal health and safety, the state is justified in emergency intervention based upon verified information. Therefore the Washington state legislature hereby provides for the reporting of such cases to the appropriate public authorities.
(2) It is the intent of the legislature that: (a) As a result of such reports, protective services shall be made available in an effort to prevent further abuses, and to safeguard the general welfare of the patients; and (b) such reports shall be maintained and disseminated with strictest regard for the privacy of the subjects of such reports and so as to safeguard against arbitrary, malicious, or erroneous information or actions.


FindingsPurposeSeverabilityConflict with federal requirements1999 c 176: See notes following RCW 74.34.005.
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