Dangerous mental health patients could not leave state hospitals for
field trips or most other excursions without specific court orders,
under a bill the Legislature is considering.
The bill, prompted by
Phillip Paul’s escape from last fall’s “field trip” to the Spokane
County Fair by Eastern State Hospital patients, got strong support
Monday from legislators and a representative of the mental health
community during a hearing in the House Human Services Committee.
“This was a very traumatic event for Spokane County,” said Rep. Matt Shea, R-Greenacres, sponsor of HB 2717.