Current Status Bill Number:
4063Type of Legislation: General Bill GBIntroducing Body: HouseIntroduced Date: 19970422Primary Sponsor: HarrisonAll Sponsors: HarrisonDrafted Document Number: pt\1107ac.97Residing Body: SenateSubject: Mental Health Commission, mental health patients and programs, emergency admissions; judicial commitment
Body Date Action Description Com Leg Involved ______ ________ _______________________________________ _______ ____________ Senate 19980528 Read second time, notice of general amendments Senate 19980527 Committee report: Favorable 13 SMA Senate 19980205 Introduced, read first time, 13 SMA referred to Committee House 19980204 Read third time, sent to Senate House 19980203 Read second time House 19980128 Committee report: Favorable 27 H3M House 19970422 Introduced, read first time, 27 H3M referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
May 27, 1998
S. Printed 5/27/98--S.
Read the first time February 5, 1998.
To whom was referred a Bill (H. 4063), to amend Sections 44-9-90 and 44-9-100, as amended, Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1976, both relating to the powers and duties of the South Carolina Mental Health Commission, etc., respectfully
That they have duly and carefully considered the same, and recommend that the same do pass:
THOMAS L. MOORE, for Committee.
TO AMEND SECTIONS 44-9-90 AND 44-9-100, AS AMENDED, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BOTH RELATING TO THE POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION, SO AS TO DELETE THE PROVISION REQUIRING THE COMMISSION TO COLLECT STATISTICS ON AND PROMULGATE REGULATIONS FOR PERSONS WITH MENTAL DEFICIENCIES OR EPILEPSY; TO AMEND SECTION 44-15-50 RELATING TO LIMITATIONS ON GRANTS THAT MAY BE AWARDED TO LOCAL MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAMS, SO AS TO DELETE LIMITS TIED TO 1974-75 EXPENDITURES; TO AMEND SECTION 44-15-80, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE DEPARTMENT OF MENTAL HEALTH, SO AS TO FURTHER AUTHORIZE ACCESS TO TREATMENT FOR THOSE UNABLE TO PAY; TO AMEND SECTION 44-17-410, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO PROCEDURES FOR EMERGENCY MENTAL HEALTH ADMISSIONS, SO AS TO REVISE CERTAIN ASPECTS OF THESE PROCEDURES; TO AMEND SECTION 44-17-540, AS AMENDED, AND SECTION 44-17-580, RELATING TO JUDICIAL HEARINGS CONCERNING COMMITMENT SO AS TO CLARIFY WHEN A PETITION SEEKING COMMITMENT MUST BE DISMISSED; TO AMEND SECTION 44-22-150, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO RESTRAINING MENTAL HEALTH PATIENTS, SO AS TO DEFINE THE TERM 'RESTRAINT'; AND TO AMEND SECTION 44-23-1100 RELATING TO CONFIDENTIALITY OF PROBATE RECORDS ON MENTAL HEALTH PATIENTS, SO AS TO CHANGE WHAT STANDARDS AND PROCEDURES APPLY.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 44-9-90(4) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(4) It shall collect statistics bearing on mental illness, mental deficiency, epilepsy, drug addiction, and alcoholism, as well as study the cause, pathology, and prevention of mental defects and diseases;"
SECTION 2. Section 44-9-100(4) of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 37 of 1993, is further amended to read:
"(4) adopt regulations not inconsistent with this chapter, Chapter 11, Chapter 13, Article 1 of Chapter 15, Chapter 17, Chapter 22, Chapter 23, Chapter 24, Chapter 27, and Chapter 52 as it may find to be reasonably necessary for the government of all institutions over which it has authority and of state mental health facilities and the proper and efficient institutionalization of the mentally ill, mentally defective, epileptic, psychotic senile, drug addicted, or alcoholic;"
SECTION 3. Section 44-15-50 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-15-50. Except as provided by this section, grants for any program shall not exceed fifty percent of the total expenditures for the year 1974-75 only for (a) salaries, (b) contract facilities and services, (c) operation, maintenance and service costs, (d) per diem and travel expenses of members of community mental health boards and (e) other expenditures specifically approved and authorized by the Department of Mental Health. Grants may be made for expenditures for mental health services whether provided by operation of a local facility or through contract with other public or private agencies or individual persons."
SECTION 4. Section 44-15-80(2) and (3) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(2) Govern eligibility for service so that no person will be denied service on the basis of inability to pay and so that any one who cannot afford to pay for necessary treatment at the rate customarily charged in available private practice is eligible to receive services from the community mental health clinic;
(3) Provide for establishment of fee schedules and reduction of balance due which shall must be based upon ability to pay, the guiding principles of which shall be that no one who can afford to pay for his own treatment at the rate customarily charged in available private practice shall be treated in the community mental health services clinic except as provided in this section;"
SECTION 5. Section 44-17-410 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 296 of 1992, is further amended to read:
"Section 44-17-410. A person may be admitted to a public or private hospital, mental health clinic, or mental health facility for emergency admission upon:
(1) written affidavit under oath by a person stating:
(a) a belief that the person is mentally ill and because of this condition is likely to cause serious harm to himself or others if not immediately hospitalized;
(b) the specific type of serious harm thought probable if the person is not immediately hospitalized and the factual basis for this belief;
(2) a certification in triplicate by at least one licensed physician stating that the physician has examined the person and is of the opinion that the person is mentally ill and because of this condition is likely to cause harm to himself through neglect, inability to care for himself, or personal injury or otherwise or to others if not immediately hospitalized. The certification must contain the grounds for the opinion. A person for whom a certificate has been issued may not be admitted on the basis of that certificate after the expiration of three calendar days after the date of the examination;
(3) within forty-eight hours after admission, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, the place of admission shall forward the affidavit and certification to the probate court of the county in which the person resides or, in extenuating circumstances, where the acts or conduct leading to the hospitalization occurred.
Within forty-eight hours of receipt of the affidavit and certification exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, the court shall conduct preliminary review of all the evidence to determine if probable cause exists to continue emergency detention of the patient. If the court finds that probable cause does not exist, it shall issue an order of release for the patient. Upon a finding of probable cause, the court shall make a written order detailing its findings and may order the continued detention of the patient.
With each affidavit and certification, the treatment facility shall provide the court with a designated examiner appointment form listing the names of two designated examiners at the treatment facility.
If the court appoints these two designated examiners, the examination must be performed at the treatment facility and a report must be submitted to the court within seven days from the date of admission. The court may appoint independent designated examiners who shall submit a report to the court within the time allotted above. In the process of examination by the designated examiners, previous hospitalization records must be considered. At least one of the examiners appointed by the court must be a licensed physician. The examiners' reports must include the grounds for the examiners' conclusions.
If the report of the designated examiners is that the patient is not mentally ill to the extent that involuntary treatment is required, the court shall dismiss the petition and the patient must be discharged immediately by the facility unless the designated examiners report that the patient is a chemically dependent person in need of emergency commitment and that procedures have been initiated pursuant to Section 44-52-50. In which case, emergency commitment procedures must be complied with in accordance with Chapter 52, and the facility shall transfer the patient to an appropriate treatment facility as defined by Section 44-52-10, provided that confirmation has been obtained from the facility that a bed is available; transportation must be provided by the department."
If the report of the designated examiners is that the patient is mentally ill and involuntary treatment is required, the court may order that the person be detained, appoint counsel for the patient if counsel has not been retained, and fix a date for a full hearing to be held pursuant to Section 44-17-570 within fifteen days from the date of admission. The court shall give notice of the hearing pursuant to Section 44-17-420.
The examiners' report must be available to the person's counsel before the full hearing. The person must be given the opportunity to request an independent designated examiner pursuant to Section 44-17-530."
SECTION 6. Section 44-17-540 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 34 of 1991, is further amended to read:
"Section 44-17-540. If the report of the two designated examiners, other than the independent designated examiner, is to the effect that they are of the opinion that the person is not mentally ill to the extent that involuntary treatment is required, the court shall terminate the proceedings and dismiss the petition immediately upon receipt of the report. If the report of the two designated examiners, other than the independent designated examiner, is divided, the court may terminate the proceedings or may designate a third examiner, who must be a psychiatrist, and charge the three examiners to render a majority opinion within five days. If the report of the designated examiners is to the effect that they are of the opinion that the person is mentally ill and involuntary treatment is required, the court shall conduct a hearing. For persons admitted pursuant to Section 44-17-410, the hearing may be held on the same day as the designated examinations unless the person or his counsel objects. Upon objection by the person or his counsel, the court shall delay the hearing. For persons whose admission is sought under Section 44-17-510, the court immediately shall fix a date for and give notice of a hearing, to be held not less than five nor more than seven days, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, from receipt of the report."
SECTION 7. Section 44-17-580 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-17-580. If, upon completion of the hearing and consideration of the record, the court finds upon clear and convincing evidence that the person is mentally ill, needs involuntary treatment and because of his condition:
(1) lacks sufficient insight or capacity to make responsible decisions with respect to his treatment; or
(2) there is a likelihood of serious harm to himself or others, it shall order in-patient or out-patient treatment at a mental health facility, public or private, designated or licensed by the Department of Mental Health. If the court finds that he is not mentally ill and in need of involuntary treatment, it shall dismiss the proceedings.
If the court orders out-patient treatment and the respondent fails to adhere to the prescribed out-patient treatment program, on report of the failure by the treatment facility the court upon notice to the respondent and his counsel may order a supplemental hearing and further order in-patient treatment in a designated or licensed facility. The probate court issuing the order shall maintain jurisdiction over the person for the purpose of supplemental proceedings as herein set forth and every order issued pursuant to this paragraph shall be so conditioned. An order for in-patient treatment at a mental health facility shall not raise a presumption of incompetency and no rights shall be denied a person unless specifically ordered by the court."
SECTION 8. Section 44-22-150 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 279 of 1992, is further amended by adding at the end:
"(C) For purposes of this section, 'restraint' does not include medical protective devices used as a regular part of medical, diagnostic, or surgical procedures, used to posturally support a patient, or used to obtain or maintain normative bodily functioning."
SECTION 9. Section 44-23-1100 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-23-1100. Any copies of completed forms retained by judges of probate shall be safeguarded in a confidential file, and the information therein contained shall not be disclosed except pursuant to Section 44-23-1090 44-22-100."
SECTION 10. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.