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(Olympia, WA)  --  Lawmakers are proposing a measure they hope will improve care at Washington's largest psychiatric hospitals.  Under the bill, some patients would be diverted from Western State Hospital in Lakewood and Eastern State Hospital in Medical Lake to relieve overcrowding at the larger hospitals.  Whereas community hospitals have rejected admitting such patients in the past, a possible cash infusion from the state would provide incentive for the community hospitals to accept and treat them.  Lawmakers who support the bill say mental health patients are better off getting treatment closer to where they live rather than at the two large centralized locations.

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