Hospital Capacity Admission Units available to take non-acute patients in need of skilled nursing care

February 17, 2022

As a result of advocacy by WSHA and hospitals across the state in late 2021 and early 2022, the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) is opening Hospital Capacity Admission Units – nursing facility units staffed by the state to help move nonacute patients out of hospitals.

Currently, units in King County and Clark County are fully operational, with Spokane and Bellingham units expected to be online shortly. WSHA strongly encourages hospitals to connect with the Hospital Capacity Admission Units to see if they can accept nonacute patients who need nursing home care. We understand that King County, in particular, has space available. You can access the online directory of nursing facilities operating the Hospital Capacity Admission Units here. Hospitals should reach out directly to nursing facilities to coordinate admission. The DSHS page will continue to be updated as more nursing facility units open in the coming weeks.

The goal of the Hospital Capacity Admission Units is to create hospital bed capacity by expediting transition of patients from acute care settings to skilled-nursing facilities (SNFs) where they can receive appropriate care to support their rehabilitation and post-acute care needs. This is facilitated by addressing the direct-care workforce shortages at SNFs that have resulted in empty beds/units because of lack of staff.

DSHS has contracted with nurse staffing agency. The agency is providing registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and certified nursing assistants to over 240 beds in 10 contracted nursing facilities through June 30, 2022. The agency is deploying these teams in a phased fashion through the month of February.


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