Law:Title 7. Mental Health And Mental Retardation. Subtitle E. Special Provisions Relating To Mental Illness And Mental Retardation (Texas)

From Law Delta

Jump to: navigation, search

Subtitle E. Special Provisions Relating To Mental Illness And Mental Retardation

Contents

Chapter 611. Mental Health Records

Section  611.001.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Patient" means a person who consults or is interviewed by a professional for diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of any mental or emotional condition or disorder, including alcoholism or drug addiction.

(2)  "Professional" means:

(A)  a person authorized to practice medicine in any state or nation;

(B)  a person licensed or certified by this state to diagnose, evaluate, or treat any mental or emotional condition or disorder; or

(C)  a person the patient reasonably believes is authorized, licensed, or certified as provided by this subsection.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  611.002.  Confidentiality Of Information And Prohibition Against Disclosure.

(a) Communications between a patient and a professional, and records of the identity, diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of a patient that are created or maintained by a professional, are confidential.

(b)  Confidential communications or records may not be disclosed except as provided by Section 611.004 or 611.0045.

(c)  This section applies regardless of when the patient received services from a professional.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.11, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section  611.003.  Persons Who May Claim Privilege Of Confidentiality.

(a) The privilege of confidentiality may be claimed by:

(1)  the patient;

(2)  a person listed in Section 611.004(a)(4) or (a)(5) who is acting on the patient's behalf; or

(3)  the professional, but only on behalf of the patient.

(b)  The authority of a professional to claim the privilege of confidentiality on behalf of the patient is presumed in the absence of evidence to the contrary.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  611.004.  Authorized Disclosure Of Confidential Information Other Than In Judicial Or Administrative Proceeding.

(a) A professional may disclose confidential information only:

(1)  to a governmental agency if the disclosure is required or authorized by law;

(2)  to medical or law enforcement personnel if the professional determines that there is a probability of imminent physical injury by the patient to the patient or others or there is a probability of immediate mental or emotional injury to the patient;

(3)  to qualified personnel for management audits, financial audits, program evaluations, or research, in accordance with Subsection (b);

(4)  to a person who has the written consent of the patient, or a parent if the patient is a minor, or a guardian if the patient has been adjudicated as incompetent to manage the patient's personal affairs;

(5)  to the patient's personal representative if the patient is deceased;

(6)  to individuals, corporations, or governmental agencies involved in paying or collecting fees for mental or emotional health services provided by a professional;

(7)  to other professionals and personnel under the professionals' direction who participate in the diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of the patient;

(8)  in an official legislative inquiry relating to a state hospital or state school as provided by Subsection (c);

(9)  to designated persons or personnel of a correctional facility in which a person is detained if the disclosure is for the sole purpose of providing treatment and health care to the person in custody;

(10)  to an employee or agent of the professional who requires mental health care information to provide mental health care services or in complying with statutory, licensing, or accreditation requirements, if the professional has taken appropriate action to ensure that the employee or agent:

(A)  will not use or disclose the information for any other purposes;  and

(B)  will take appropriate steps to protect the information;  or

(11)  to satisfy a request for medical records of a deceased or incompetent person pursuant to Section 74.051(e), Civil Practice and Remedies Code.

(b)  Personnel who receive confidential information under Subsection (a)(3) may not directly or indirectly identify or otherwise disclose the identity of a patient in a report or in any other manner.

(c)  The exception in Subsection (a)(8) applies only to records created by the state hospital or state school or by the employees of the hospital or school. Information or records that identify a patient may be released only with the patient's proper consent.

(d)  A person who receives information from confidential communications or records may not disclose the information except to the extent that disclosure is consistent with the authorized purposes for which the person first obtained the information. This subsection does not apply to a person listed in Subsection (a)(4) or (a)(5) who is acting on the patient's behalf.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 856, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1264, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 138, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  611.0045.  Right To Mental Health Record.

(a) Except as otherwise provided by this section, a patient is entitled to have access to the content of a confidential record made about the patient.

(b)  The professional may deny access to any portion of a record if the professional determines that release of that portion would be harmful to the patient's physical, mental, or emotional health.

(c)  If the professional denies access to any portion of a record, the professional shall give the patient a signed and dated written statement that having access to the record would be harmful to the patient's physical, mental, or emotional health and shall include a copy of the written statement in the patient's records. The statement must specify the portion of the record to which access is denied, the reason for denial, and the duration of the denial.

(d)  The professional who denies access to a portion of a record under this section shall redetermine the necessity for the denial at each time a request for the denied portion is made. If the professional again denies access, the professional shall notify the patient of the denial and document the denial as prescribed by Subsection (c).

(e)  If a professional denies access to a portion of a confidential record, the professional shall allow examination and copying of the record by another professional if the patient selects the professional to treat the patient for the same or a related condition as the professional denying access.

(f)  The content of a confidential record shall be made available to a person listed by Section 611.004(a)(4) or (5) who is acting on the patient's behalf.

(g)  A professional shall delete confidential information about another person who has not consented to the release, but may not delete information relating to the patient that another person has provided, the identity of the person responsible for that information, or the identity of any person who provided information that resulted in the patient's commitment.

(h)  If a summary or narrative of a confidential record is requested by the patient or other person requesting release under this section, the professional shall prepare the summary or narrative.

(i)  The professional or other entity that has possession or control of the record shall grant access to any portion of the record to which access is not specifically denied under this section within a reasonable time and may charge a reasonable fee.

(j)  Notwithstanding Section 159.002, Occupations Code, this section applies to the release of a confidential record created or maintained by a professional, including a physician, that relates to the diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of a mental or emotional condition or disorder, including alcoholism or drug addiction.

(k)  The denial of a patient's access to any portion of a record by the professional or other entity that has possession or control of the record suspends, until the release of that portion of the record, the running of an applicable statute of limitations on a cause of action in which evidence relevant to the cause of action is in that portion of the record.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.12, eff. Aug. 30, 1993. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 14.806, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  611.005.  Legal Remedies For Improper Disclosure Or Failure To Disclose.

(a) A person aggrieved by the improper disclosure of or failure to disclose confidential communications or records in violation of this chapter may petition the district court of the county in which the person resides for appropriate relief, including injunctive relief. The person may petition a district court of Travis County if the person is not a resident of this state.

(b)  In a suit contesting the denial of access under Section 611.0045, the burden of proving that the denial was proper is on the professional who denied the access.

(c)  The aggrieved person also has a civil cause of action for damages.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 903, Sec. 1.13, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section  611.006.  Authorized Disclosure Of Confidential Information In Judicial Or Administrative Proceeding.

(a) A professional may disclose confidential information in:

(1)  a judicial or administrative proceeding brought by the patient or the patient's legally authorized representative against a professional, including malpractice proceedings;

(2)  a license revocation proceeding in which the patient is a complaining witness and in which disclosure is relevant to the claim or defense of a professional;

(3)  a judicial or administrative proceeding in which the patient waives the patient's right in writing to the privilege of confidentiality of information or when a representative of the patient acting on the patient's behalf submits a written waiver to the confidentiality privilege;

(4)  a judicial or administrative proceeding to substantiate and collect on a claim for mental or emotional health services rendered to the patient;

(5)  a judicial proceeding if the judge finds that the patient, after having been informed that communications would not be privileged, has made communications to a professional in the course of a court-ordered examination relating to the patient's mental or emotional condition or disorder, except that those communications may be disclosed only with respect to issues involving the patient's mental or emotional health;

(6)  a judicial proceeding affecting the parent-child relationship;

(7)  any criminal proceeding, as otherwise provided by law;

(8)  a judicial or administrative proceeding regarding the abuse or neglect, or the cause of abuse or neglect, of a resident of an institution, as that term is defined by Chapter 242;

(9)  a judicial proceeding relating to a will if the patient's physical or mental condition is relevant to the execution of the will;

(10)  an involuntary commitment proceeding for court-ordered treatment or for a probable cause hearing under:

(A)  Chapter 462;

(B)  Chapter 574; or

(C)  Chapter 593; or

(11)  a judicial or administrative proceeding where the court or agency has issued an order or subpoena.

(b)  On granting an order under Subsection (a)(5), the court, in determining the extent to which disclosure of all or any part of a communication is necessary, shall impose appropriate safeguards against unauthorized disclosure.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 856, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



Section  611.007.  Revocation Of Consent.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a patient or a patient's legally authorized representative may revoke a disclosure consent to a professional at any time. A revocation is valid only if it is written, dated, and signed by the patient or legally authorized representative.

(b)  A patient may not revoke a disclosure that is required for purposes of making payment to the professional for mental health care services provided to the patient.

(c)  A patient may not maintain an action against a professional for a disclosure made by the professional in good faith reliance on an authorization if the professional did not have notice of the revocation of the consent.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 856, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



Section  611.008.  Request By Patient.

(a) On receipt of a written request from a patient to examine or copy all or part of the patient's recorded mental health care information, a professional, as promptly as required under the circumstances but not later than the 15th day after the date of receiving the request, shall:

(1)  make the information available for examination during regular business hours and provide a copy to the patient, if requested; or

(2)  inform the patient if the information does not exist or cannot be found.

(b)  Unless provided for by other state law, the professional may charge a reasonable fee for retrieving or copying mental health care information and is not required to permit examination or copying until the fee is paid unless there is a medical emergency.

(c)  A professional may not charge a fee for copying mental health care information under Subsection (b) to the extent the fee is prohibited under Subchapter M, Chapter 161.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 856, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.


Personal tools
Laws
Variants
Actions
Navigation
Toolbox