A top social services official says Kansas will ask the federal government within six months to recertify one of its two mental hospitals.
But interim Department for Aging and Disability Services Secretary Tim Keck faced pointed questions Thursday from legislators about staffing at Osawatomie State Hospital.
The House and Senate health committees had a joint hearing.
The federal government decertified the hospital last month after a critical survey found that the hospital failed to protect suicidal patients, adequately supervise care or perform required safety checks. The survey also cited a report of an employee's rape in October.
Keck said the department is hiring a consultant to help regain certification.
Legislators from both parties said the hospital needs more staff and were frustrated with the lack of a specific proposal.