Institutions costing taxpayers a ‘fortune’

Posted by Pam Blanton on March 1, 2016

From King 5 News, Susannah Frame – Part 4 

Washington state has a larger population of developmentally disabled adults living in state-run institutions than nearly every other state in the union.

That reality flies in the face of scientific evidence that shows this vulnerable population fares better receiving care in a community setting. And it comes at a high cost: Officials with the state’s Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) say the institutional setting is the most expensive way to care for this population.

“In general, we’re paying a fortune for services that are very well established in evidence to be inferior to what we could be buying for less money,” said Charlie Lakin, one of the foremost researchers in this field in the country. “We’re spending more to get less and that should be of concern I think to public officials (in Washington state).”