Sarah Beller from The Influence: “On Friday, the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health issued new ‘Fresh Air’ rules for psychiatric patients in the state. The rules require hospitals to grant mental health patients daily outdoor access (depending on factors like weather, and the patient’s medical condition, legal status, or risk of running away). But according to Stat News, up to 20 Massachusetts hospitals—about one-third of the psychiatric facilities in the state—plan to seek waivers to the new rules. The hospitals cite concerns about ‘safety, staffing, space, and liability.’ Some private hospitals are also saying that because the average length of psychiatric stay in Massachusetts is ‘only’ nine days, access to fresh air doesn’t matter.”
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