The Office of Protective Services (OPS) is a full service unique law enforcement agency which is dedicated to providing the highest level of safety and security to patients, staff and the community through competent, professional law enforcement services; while facilitating compassionate treatment of patients that are mentally ill. In order to achieve this, OPS is committed to hiring candidates that fit within the team culture, the mission, and the daily work environment of the organization. Our personnel are selected for their honesty, character, integrity and leadership. The Office of Protective Services is a POST participating agency (Investigators and Communications Operators) that is committed to having personnel that are trained in the latest best practices. The objective of the OPS is to provide ongoing training, supervision, and guidance to assist law enforcement personnel and develop their knowledge, skills and abilities to the highest levels possible.

The Department of State Hospitals’ (DSH) police officers provide safety, service, and security to patients, employees and the public in and around each hospital. There are approximately 700 DSH Police Officers, 30 Communications Operators (Dispatchers) and 40 Investigators assigned to five different hospitals (Atascadero, Coalinga, Metropolitan/LA, Napa, and Patton) and three psychiatric centers (Salinas Valley, Stockton and Vacaville) in California.

In addition to police responsibilities and investigations, law enforcement personnel work closely with clinical staff to ensure the safe treatment of the more than 6,300 patients assigned to the facilities and the safety of the more than 10,000 DSH employees.

Fire Services

The Fire Services contribution to the DSH mission is to improve services to the patients, staff and the community through mutual aid. The fulfillment of this mission is being met by uniform improvements to fire service training and education, the use of new technologies making tasks more efficient, and the standardization of hiring practices throughout the state. DSH has two fully functioning fire stations at Napa State Hospital and Atascadero State Hospital, which routinely answer calls or service from the community and DSH facility staff. The dedicated Firefighters who provide services at four of the DSH facilities provide fire suppression and protection to patient care and protect the lives of anyone who works, resides in the area, or visits one of the Department of State Hospitals Fire Department facilities.

Now Hiring!

Fire Departments

Atascadero State Hospital
Coalinga State Hospital
Metro State Hospital
Napa State Hospital


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Quarterly Written Exams for DSH Police Officers:

  • March 11, 2017 – Final Filing Date – Cut Off January 17, 2017
  • June 17, 2017 – Final Filing Date – Cut Off April 21, 2017
  • September 16, 2017 – Final Filing Date – Cut Off July 21, 2017
  • December 9, 2017 – Final Filing Date – Cut Off October 13, 2017