Current Status Introducing Body:
HouseBill Number: 3217Ratification Number: 56Act Number: 30Primary Sponsor: WoffordType of Legislation: GBSubject: Mental health patients, discharge provisions for childCompanion Bill Number: 58Date Bill Passed both Bodies: 19930318Computer Document Number: 436/12847AC.93Governor's Action: SDate of Governor's Action: 19930423Introduced Date: 19930120Last History Body: ------Last History Date: 19930423Last History Type: Act No. 30Scope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: WoffordType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN Leg Involved ---- ------ ------------ ------------------------------ --- ------------ 3217 ------ 19930423 Act No. 30 3217 ------ 19930423 Signed by Governor 3217 ------ 19930420 Ratified R 56 3217 Senate 19930318 Read third time, enrolled for ratification 3217 Senate 19930316 Read second time 3217 Senate 19930311 Committee Report: Favorable 13 3217 Senate 19930303 Introduced, read first time, 13 referred to Committee 3217 House 19930302 Read third time, sent to Senate 3217 House 19930225 Read second time 3217 House 19930224 Committee Report: Favorable 27 3217 House 19930120 Introduced, read first time, 27 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
(A30, R56, H3217)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-40, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO DISCHARGE OF CHILD IN NEED OF TREATMENT VOLUNTARILY ADMITTED, SO AS TO CHANGE AN INCORRECT REFERENCE; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-60, RELATING TO EMERGENCY ADMISSIONS OF CHILDREN, SO AS TO REQUIRE THE REASONS WHY VOLUNTARY ADMISSION IS NOT POSSIBLE AS BASIS FOR EMERGENCY ADMISSION AND TO REQUIRE PHYSICIANS PERFORMING EXAMINATIONS TO CONSIDER MEDICAL RECORDS THAT ARE AVAILABLE; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-70, RELATING TO TAKING INTO CUSTODY A CHILD WHO MAY CAUSE SERIOUS HARM, SO AS TO REVISE THE REFERENCES TO CERTAIN CLASSIFICATIONS OF CHILD PATIENTS; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-80, RELATING TO TRANSPORTING A CHILD TO THE HOSPITAL, SO AS TO REVISE CERTIFICATE REQUIREMENTS; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-90, RELATING TO PROCEDURES FOR JUDICIAL ADMISSION, SO AS TO REVISE THESE PROCEDURES; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-110, RELATING TO JUDICIAL ADMISSIONS, SO AS TO CORRECT CERTAIN REFERENCES; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-140, RELATING TO COMMITMENT OF CHILDREN FOR TREATMENT, SO AS TO BROADEN THE TYPE FACILITIES CHILDREN MAY BE COMMITTED TO; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-150, RELATING TO COMMITMENT FOR EVALUATION PURPOSES, SO AS TO CHANGE AN INCORRECT REFERENCE; TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-170, RELATING TO RE-EXAMINATIONS, SO AS TO CHANGE AN INTERNAL REFERENCE; AND TO AMEND SECTION 44-24-240, RELATING TO AGENCIES PROVIDING SERVICES, SO AS TO MAKE A TECHNICAL CORRECTION.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Petition for commitment
SECTION 1. Section 44-24-40(2)(c) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(c) the director of the treatment program or facility, within three days, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, after the child or other interested person requests the child's discharge, files with the court of the county in which the child resided or was present immediately before his admission, a petition for judicial commitment pursuant to Section 44-24-90."
Contents of application for emergency admission
SECTION 2. Section 44-24-60(A)(1) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(1) written application under oath by an interested person stating:
(a) belief that the child is in need of treatment and in danger of harming himself or others as a result of his need for treatment;
(b) the specific type of serious harm thought probable if the child is not hospitalized immediately;
(c) the factual basis for this belief;
(d) the reason why the child cannot obtain treatment voluntarily."
Emergency admission examinations
SECTION 3. Section 44-24-60(H) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(H) If the court appoints these two examiners, the examination must be performed at the place of admission and a report must be submitted to the court within seven days from the date of admission. The court may appoint independent examiners who shall submit a report to the court within five days. In the process of the examination by the examiners, available previous treatment records must be considered. At least one of the examiners appointed by the court must be a licensed physician."
Taking custody of child needing emergency admission
SECTION 4. Section 44-24-70 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"Section 44-24-70. If a child in need of emergency admission cannot be examined by a licensed physician pursuant to Section 44-24-60 because his whereabouts are unknown or for any other reason, the petitioner seeking commitment pursuant to Section 44-24-60 shall execute an affidavit stating that he believes the child is in need of emergency admission. The grounds for the belief must be included and a statement that the usual procedure for examination cannot be followed and the reason. Upon presentation of the affidavit, the court may require a law enforcement officer to take the child into custody and transport him for an examination by a licensed physician as provided for in Section 44-24-60. If within the twenty-four hours the child is not examined by a licensed physician or, if upon examination, the physician does not execute the certification provided in Section 44-24-60, the proceedings must be terminated and the child immediately released. Otherwise, proceedings must be held pursuant to Section 44-24-60."
Transporting child to hospital
SECTION 5. Section 44-24-80 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"Section 44-24-80. The certificate provided for in Section 44-24-60(A)(2) requires a law enforcement officer, preferably in civilian clothes, to take the child into custody and transport him to the hospital designated by the certification. Upon request, a law enforcement officer shall transport the child's parent, legal guardian, or other adult family member to accompany the child to the hospital. No child may be taken into custody after the expiration of three days from the date of certification. A friend or relative may transport the individual to the hospital designated in the application, if the friend or relative has read and signed a statement on the certificate which clearly states that it is the responsibility of a law enforcement officer to provide timely transportation for the patient and that the friend or relative freely chooses to assume the responsibility. A friend or relative who chooses to transport the patient is not entitled to reimbursements from the State for the cost of the transportation. No child may be subjected to mechanical restraints during transportation except upon the determination by the law enforcement officer that restraints are necessary to prevent the child's escape or harm to himself or others. An officer acting in accordance with this chapter is immune from civil liability."
Petition and proceedings for judicial admission
SECTION 6. Section 44-24-90 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"Section 44-24-90. (A) Proceedings for judicial admission to a treatment program or facility begin by an interested person filing a written petition with the court of the county where the child is present or where the child is a resident. The petition must state the factual basis of the person's belief that:
(1) the child is in need of treatment;
(2) treatment may be obtained only through an involuntary admission.
(B) The petition may be accompanied by a certificate of an examiner stating that he has examined the child and is of the opinion the child is a child in need of treatment. The certificate or written statement must contain the underlying facts upon which the examiner or petitioner bases his conclusions.
(C) Upon receiving a petition the court shall give the child and his legal guardian, the guardian ad litem, if one has been appointed, and other interested persons notice by certified mail of the petition and of the child's right to counsel. Every reasonable effort must be made to notify the child's natural parents of the petition.
(D) Within three days after a petition for judicial commitment is filed, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, the court shall appoint counsel to represent the child if counsel has not been retained in the child's behalf. The court shall appoint two examiners, one of whom must be a licensed physician, to examine the child and report to the court their findings as to the child's mental condition and the need, if any, for treatment. If the child refuses examination, the court may require a law enforcement officer to take the child into custody and to transport him for examination by the two examiners. After the examination, the child must be released. A record of the examination must be made and offered to his counsel. If the conclusions of the examination are that the child is a child in need of treatment, the underlying facts must be recorded as well as the conclusion. The child or his guardian may request an additional examination by an independent examiner. The examination must be conducted at public expense."
Dispositon of child based on examiners' reports
SECTION 7. Section 44-24-110(B) and (C) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(B) If the report of the examiners is that the child is not in need of judicial admission, the court shall dismiss the petition and the child must be discharged immediately by the place of admission if the child has been admitted to a treatment facility or program.
(C) If the report of the examiners is that the child is a child in need of judicial admission, the court may order that the child be detained at the place of his admission or in another treatment facility or program."
Disposition of child based on presentation of evidence
SECTION 8. Section 44-24-140 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"Section 44-24-140. (A) If the court finds, after presentation of all the evidence, that the child is not in need of judicial admission, the court shall order that he must be discharged if he has been hospitalized before the hearing.
(B) If upon completion of the hearing and consideration of the record the court finds upon clear and convincing evidence that the child is in need of judicial admission, the court may order treatment in the department or at another program or facility that agrees to accept the child."
Authority to commit
SECTION 9. Section 44-24-150(C) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(C) If a psychiatric evaluation indicates a child is in need of judicial admission, the family court may:
(1) defer to the probate court for purposes of commitment to a range of services; or
(2) commit to a range of services utilizing the procedures and forms applicable to the probate court pursuant to Chapter 23, Sections 44-24-90 through 44-24-140."
Proceedings upon petition for reexamination
SECTION 10. Section 44-24-170(B) of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"(B) Upon receipt of the petition the court shall conduct proceedings in accordance with applicable provisions of Sections 44-24-90 through 44-24-140. The proceedings are not required if the petition is filed sooner than six months after the issuance of the order for treatment or sooner than six months after the holding of a hearing pursuant to this section. The costs must be borne by the State."
Agencies to participate in planning and providing services
SECTION 11. Section 44-24-240 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 88 of 1991, is amended to read:
"Section 44-24-240. Agencies providing services to children or holding legal custody of children are accountable within their legislative mandate to participate in the planning and service provision to a child determined to be in need of treatment. Agencies shall exchange and share records of services to the child and the child's background."
SECTION 12. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
Approved the 23rd day of April, 1993.