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Gov. McAuliffe Signs Mental Health Bill - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Gov. McAuliffe Signs Mental Health Bill

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A key part of Sen. Creigh Deeds' efforts to fix Virginia's mental health system is now law.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed legislation Monday that extends the length of time allotted for finding a psychiatric bed for those under an emergency custody order from six hours to 12 hours. And after eight hours of searching, if no private beds can be found, a state hospital will now be required to admit those under an emergency custody order.

Deeds' son attacked his father then committed suicide at their Bath County homestead last November. The incident occurred after the local community services board said it was unable to locate an available psychiatric bed for Gus Deeds within six hours.

McAuliffe called the legislation good first steps in improving Virginia's mental health care.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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