Nevada Ranks Last in Nationwide Survey of Spending on Mentally Retarded, Developmentally Disabled
Since 1977, Nevada has been the "worst in the nation" in funding services for individuals with mental retardation and developmental disabilities, according to a University of Illinois-Chicago study, the Las Vegas Sun reports. The report, titled The State of the States in Developmental Disabilities," is based on 1998 statistics. According to the study:
- Nevada residents rank last in the nation for funding, spending $1.05 for every $1,000 of personal income on services for the mentally retarded and individuals with chronic disabilities. The national average is $3.69, while Rhode Island's $7.22 leads the nation;
- At 1.3 employees per resident, Nevada's state-run institutions have the nation's lowest staffing levels. The national average is 2.21 workers per resident, while Alaska and Maine have the highest averages at 4 workers per patient.
- Nevada was the only state whose taxpayer-funded institutional population increased between 1977 and 1998. The 43% state increase is compared to a national decrease of 65%.
- Nevada placed, on average, a "nationwide low" of 56 individuals in community residential treatment settings for every 100,000 state residents. The national average was 155, while North Dakota had the highest average at 332.