Law:Title 7. Mental Health And Mental Retardation. Subtitle C. Texas Mental Health Code from Chapter 572. Voluntary Inpatient Mental Health Services (Texas)

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Subtitle C. Texas Mental Health Code

Contents

Chapter 572. Voluntary Inpatient Mental Health Services

Section  572.001.  Request For Admission.

(a) A person 16 years of age or older or a person younger than 16 years of age who is or has been married may request admission to an inpatient mental health facility by filing a request with the administrator of the facility to which admission is requested. The parent, managing conservator, or guardian of a person younger than 18 years of age who is not and has not been married may request the admission of the person to an inpatient mental health facility by filing a request with the administrator of the facility to which admission is requested.

(b)  An admission request must be in writing and signed by the person requesting the admission.

(c)  A person or agency appointed as the guardian or a managing conservator of a person younger than 18 years of age and acting as an employee or agent of the state or a political subdivision of the state may request admission of the person younger than 18 years of age only with the person's consent.

(d)  The administrator of an inpatient mental health facility may admit a minor who is 16 years of age or older or a person younger than 16 years of age who is or has been married to an inpatient mental health facility as a voluntary patient without the consent of the parent, managing conservator, or guardian.

(e)  A request for admission as a voluntary patient must state that the person for whom admission is requested agrees to voluntarily remain in the facility until the person's discharge and that the person consents to the diagnosis, observation, care, and treatment provided until the earlier of:

(1)  the person's discharge; or

(2)  the period prescribed by Section 572.004.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 705, Sec. 4.01, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1000, Sec. 1, eff. June 20, 2003.



Section  572.002.  Admission.

The facility administrator or the administrator's authorized, qualified designee may admit a person for whom a proper request for voluntary inpatient services is filed if the administrator or the designee determines:

(1)  from a preliminary examination that the person has symptoms of mental illness and will benefit from the inpatient services;

(2)  that the person has been informed of the person's rights as a voluntary patient; and

(3)  that the admission was voluntarily agreed to:

(A)  by the person, if the person is:

(i)  16 years of age or older; or

(ii)  younger than 16 years of age and is or has been married; or

(B)  by the person's parent, managing conservator, or guardian, if the person is younger than 18 years of age and is not and has not been married.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 393, Sec. 2, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1000, Sec. 2, eff. June 20, 2003.



Section  572.0022.  Information On Medications.

(a) A mental health facility shall provide to a patient in the patient's primary language, if possible, and in accordance with board rules information relating to prescription medication ordered by the patient's treating physician.

(b)  The facility shall also provide the information to the patient's family on request, but only to the extent not otherwise prohibited by state or federal confidentiality laws.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.03, eff. May 1, 1994. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 337, Sec. 2, eff. May 27, 1997.



Section  572.0025.  Intake, Assessment, And Admission.

(a) The board shall adopt rules governing the voluntary admission of a patient to an inpatient mental health facility, including rules governing the intake and assessment procedures of the admission process.

(b)  The rules governing the intake process shall establish minimum standards for:

(1)  reviewing a prospective patient's finances and insurance benefits;

(2)  explaining to a prospective patient the patient's rights; and

(3)  explaining to a prospective patient the facility's services and treatment process.

(c)  The assessment provided for by the rules may be conducted only by a professional who meets the qualifications prescribed by board rules.

(d)  The rules governing the assessment process shall prescribe:

(1)  the types of professionals who may conduct an assessment;

(2)  the minimum credentials each type of professional must have to conduct an assessment; and

(3)  the type of assessment that professional may conduct.

(e)  In accordance with board rule, a facility shall provide annually a minimum of eight hours of inservice training regarding intake and assessment for persons who will be conducting an intake or assessment for the facility. A person may not conduct intake or assessments without having completed the initial and applicable annual inservice training.

(f)  A prospective voluntary patient may not be formally accepted for treatment in a facility unless:

(1)  the facility has a physician's order admitting the prospective patient, which order may be issued orally, electronically, or in writing, signed by the physician, provided that, in the case of an oral order or an electronically transmitted unsigned order, a signed original is presented to the mental health facility within 24 hours of the initial order; the order must be from:

(A)  an admitting physician who has, either in person or through the use of audiovisual or other telecommunications technology, conducted a physical and psychiatric examination within 72 hours of the admission; or

(B)  an admitting physician who has consulted with a physician who has, either in person or through the use of audiovisual or other telecommunications technology, conducted an examination within 72 hours of the admission; and

(2)  the facility administrator or a person designated by the administrator has agreed to accept the prospective patient and has signed a statement to that effect.

(g)  An assessment conducted as required by rules adopted under this section does not satisfy a statutory or regulatory requirement for a personal evaluation of a patient or a prospective patient by a physician before admission.

(h)  In this section:

(1)  "Admission" means the formal acceptance of a prospective patient to a facility.

(2)  "Assessment" means the administrative process a facility uses to gather information from a prospective patient, including a medical history and the problem for which the patient is seeking treatment, to determine whether a prospective patient should be examined by a physician to determine if admission is clinically justified.

(3)  "Intake" means the administrative process for gathering information about a prospective patient and giving a prospective patient information about the facility and the facility's treatment and services.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 705, Sec. 4.03, eff. Aug. 30, 1993. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 422, Sec. 1, eff. June 9, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.83, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  572.003.  Rights Of Patients.

(a) A person's voluntary admission to an inpatient mental health facility under this chapter does not affect the person's civil rights or legal capacity or affect the person's right to obtain a writ of habeas corpus.

(b)  In addition to the rights provided by this subtitle, a person voluntarily admitted to an inpatient mental health facility under this chapter has the right:

(1)  to be reviewed periodically to determine the person's need for continued inpatient treatment; and

(2)  to have an application for court-ordered mental health services filed only as provided by Section 572.005.

(c)  A person admitted to an inpatient mental health facility under this chapter shall be informed of the rights provided under this section and Section 572.004:

(1)  orally in simple, nontechnical terms, within 24 hours after the time the person is admitted, and in writing in the person's primary language, if possible; or

(2)  through the use of a means reasonably calculated to communicate with a hearing impaired or visually impaired person, if applicable.

(d)  The patient's parent, managing conservator, or guardian shall also be informed of the patient's rights as required by this section if the patient is a minor.

(e)  In addition to the rights provided by this subtitle, a person voluntarily admitted to an inpatient mental health facility under Section 572.002(3)(B) has the right to be evaluated by a physician at regular intervals to determine the person's need for continued inpatient treatment. The department by rule shall establish the intervals at which a physician shall evaluate a person under this subsection.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.02, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1000, Sec. 3, eff. June 20, 2003.



Section  572.004.  Discharge.

(a) A voluntary patient is entitled to leave an inpatient mental health facility in accordance with this section after a written request for discharge is filed with the facility administrator or the administrator's designee. The request must be signed, timed, and dated by the patient or a person legally responsible for the patient and must be made a part of the patient's clinical record. If a patient informs an employee of or person associated with the facility of the patient's desire to leave the facility, the employee or person shall, as soon as possible, assist the patient in creating the written request and present it to the patient for the patient's signature.

(b)  The facility shall, within four hours after a request for discharge is filed, notify the physician responsible for the patient's treatment. If that physician is not available during that period, the facility shall notify any available physician of the request.

(c)  The notified physician shall discharge the patient before the end of the four-hour period unless the physician has reasonable cause to believe that the patient might meet the criteria for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention.

(d)  A physician who has reasonable cause to believe that a patient might meet the criteria for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention shall examine the patient as soon as possible within 24 hours after the time the request for discharge is filed. The physician shall discharge the patient on completion of the examination unless the physician determines that the person meets the criteria for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention. If the physician makes a determination that the patient meets the criteria for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention, the physician shall, not later than 4 p.m. on the next succeeding business day after the date on which the examination occurs, either discharge the patient or file an application for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention and obtain a written order for further detention. The physician shall notify the patient if the physician intends to detain the patient under this subsection or intends to file an application for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention. A decision to detain a patient under this subsection and the reasons for the decision shall be made a part of the patient's clinical record.

(e)  If extremely hazardous weather conditions exist or a disaster occurs, the physician may request the judge of a court that has jurisdiction over proceedings brought under Chapter 574 to extend the period during which the patient may be detained. The judge or a magistrate appointed by the judge may by written order made each day extend the period during which the patient may be detained until 4 p.m. on the first succeeding business day. The written order must declare that an emergency exists because of the weather or the occurrence of a disaster.

(f)  The patient is not entitled to leave the facility if before the end of the period prescribed by this section:

(1)  a written withdrawal of the request for discharge is filed; or

(2)  an application for court-ordered mental health services or emergency detention is filed and the patient is detained in accordance with this subtitle.

(g)  A plan for continuing care shall be prepared in accordance with Section 574.081 for each patient discharged. If sufficient time to prepare a continuing care plan before discharge is not available, the plan may be prepared and mailed to the appropriate person within 24 hours after the patient is discharged.

(h)  The patient or other person who files a request for discharge of a patient shall be notified that the person filing the request assumes all responsibility for the patient on discharge.

(i)  On receipt of a written request for discharge from a patient admitted under Section 572.002(3)(B)  who is younger than 18 years of age, a facility shall consult with the patient's parent, managing conservator, or guardian regarding the discharge.  If the parent, managing conservator, or guardian objects in writing to the patient's discharge, the facility shall continue treatment of the patient as a voluntary patient.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 107, Sec. 6.46, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 705, Sec. 4.02, eff. Aug. 30, 1993; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1000, Sec. 4, eff. June 20, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 48, Sec. 1, eff. May 17, 2005.



Section  572.005.  Application For Court-ordered Treatment.

(a) An application for court-ordered mental health services may not be filed against a patient receiving voluntary inpatient services unless:

(1)  a request for release of the patient has been filed with the facility administrator; or

(2)  in the opinion of the physician responsible for the patient's treatment, the patient meets the criteria for court-ordered mental health services and:

(A)  is absent from the facility without authorization;

(B)  is unable to consent to appropriate and necessary psychiatric treatment; or

(C)  refuses to consent to necessary and appropriate treatment recommended by the physician responsible for the patient's treatment and that physician completes a certificate of medical examination for mental illness that, in addition to the information required by Section 574.011, includes the opinion of the physician that:

(i)  there is no reasonable alternative to the treatment recommended by the physician; and

(ii)  the patient will not benefit from continued inpatient care without the recommended treatment.

(b)  The physician responsible for the patient's treatment shall notify the patient if the physician intends to file an application for court-ordered mental health services.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.04, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.


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