Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



Appropriations Committee

SB 5693

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

Brief Description: Authorizing the department of social and health services special commitment center to seek eligibility and reimbursement for health care costs covered by federal medicare, medicaid, and veterans health benefits.

Sponsors: Senators Miloscia, Darneille, Fraser and O'Ban; by request of Department of Social and Health Services.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Authorizes the Department of Social and Health Services to act on behalf of a resident of the Special Commitment Center for the purposes of applying for health care benefits.

Hearing Date: 3/16/15

Staff: James Kettel (786-7123).


A Sexually Violent Predator (SVP) suffers from a mental abnormality, or personality disorder, and has been convicted of, or charged with, a sexually violent offense. A SVP is likely to engage in predatory acts of sexual violence if not confined to a secure facility. When it appears that a person may meet the criteria of a SVP, a prosecuting agency may file a petition to confine the person alleged as a SVP. If a person is found at trial beyond a reasonable doubt to be a SVP, then the state is authorized under the Community Protection Act of 1990 to involuntarily commit the person to a total confinement facility on McNeil Island, called the Special Commitment Center (SCC), for an indefinite period of time.

The individual is held in total confinement until: (a) the individual's condition has so changed that the individual no longer meets the definition of a SVP; or (b) the court orders the person's conditional release to a less-restrictive alternative placement. During the period of total confinement, the SCC is responsible for outpatient care, inpatient care, prescription drugs, and other medical care for residents.

Summary of Bill:

The Department of Social and Health Services is authorized to act on behalf of a civilly committed resident of the Special Commitment Center for the purposes of applying for Medicare, Medicaid, veterans health benefits, or other health care benefits available as a result of participation in a health care exchange.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.