Nevada Questions Some Findings at Psych Hospitals

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CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - Nevada is questioning some findings of deficiencies by federal inspectors at two Nevada psychiatric hospitals.

In responses released Friday to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, state officials say alleged violations cited under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act should not apply to Dini-Townsend Psychiatric Hospital in Sparks or Rawson-Neal in Las Vegas.

The letters state that the law imposes special responsibilities on a hospital with a dedicated emergency department, making it illegal for them to turn people away for an inability to pay.

Nevada officials say the psychiatric hospitals are not designed to treat people in need of emergency medical care but rather to assess and treat mental health problems.

They say steps are being taken to address other deficiencies raised after recent site surveys.