NJ strikes deal; releasing psych patients

July 30, 2009 5:37:05 AM PDT
New Jersey has reached a deal to release nearly 300 patients from state psychiatric hospitals.

The plan is part of a settlement with an advocacy group that sued, claiming the state was illegally confining patients who should be in more integrated settings.

The deal calls for the state to discharge patients and make other changes over the next five years. Over that time, it is to release 297 patients who have been waiting at least a year for housing. It must also provide affordable and supervised housing for more than 1,000 others.

After the five years, the state must not hold patients for more than four months after a doctor has approved their release.

Information from: The Star-Ledger, http://www.nj.com/starledger

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