DSHS to close portion of Rainier School in Buckley

Monday, Dec. 5, 2022
DSHS Office of Communications
Lisa Pemberton
(360) 902–7844

OLYMPIA — The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services announced this week that it will close a portion of Rainier School by July 31, 2023.

The decision impacts Program Area Team C, or PAT C, which provides specialized care and independent living skills training for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The closure is part of a settlement agreement reached between the Health Care Authority, which manages the state’s Medicaid program, and DSHS, which operates Rainier School. DSHS pursued an agreement as opposed to an appeal of decertification by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services so that staff and families would have more time to transition and safely support PAT C’s 53 remaining residents.

“This is a sad time for the individual residents and their families as well as the staff who support them,” said Debbie Roberts, DSHS’ Assistant Secretary for the Developmental Disabilities Administration. “This agreement will allow time to properly help our residents safely transition to a new setting, instead of the 30-day period CMS allows for transitions if we lost on appeal. We will work closely with the individuals impacted to develop a person-centered plan, ensuring safe and supported transitions.”

PAT C receives about $1.5 million in federal funding per month. The agreement allows federal funding to continue until July 1, 2023, or when the last resident moves out, whichever is sooner.

About Rainier School
Rainier School opened in 1939 in Buckley and is one of four state-operated residential habilitation centers for adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities. It provides 24-hour residential care and teaching in the areas of work or vocational training, leisure activities, social relationships and everyday life tasks. Programs and services are individualized and designed to enhance residents’ self-determination and independence. Rainier’s other program area, PAT E, continues to operate without conditions on its certification

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