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Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
Sponsors: Senator Alexander
Document Path: l:\council\bills\nbd\11152ac05.doc
Introduced in the Senate on March 31, 2005
Currently residing in the Senate Committee on Medical Affairs
Summary: Mental health patients
HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS
Date Body Action Description with journal page number ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 3/31/2005 Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-9 3/31/2005 Senate Referred to Committee on Medical Affairs SJ-9
View the latest legislative information at the LPITS web site
VERSIONS OF THIS BILL
TO AMEND SECTION 44-9-50, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO DIVISIONS WITHIN THE DEPARTMENT OF MENTAL HEALTH, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE DIRECTOR MAY ESTABLISH DIVISIONS, RATHER THAN TO SPECIFY CERTAIN DIVISIONS IN LAW; TO AMEND SECTION 44-9-60, RELATING TO THE APPOINTMENT OF SUPERINTENDENTS FOR MENTAL HEALTH HOSPITALS, SO AS TO CHANGE THE TITLE OF "SUPERINTENDENT" TO "CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER" AND TO DELETE THE PROVISION REQUIRING APPROVAL OF THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION FOR THESE APPOINTMENTS; TO AMEND SECTION 44-9-90, RELATING TO POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION SO AS TO DELETE PROVISIONS RELATING TO PROVIDING EMERGENCY CARE AND TREATMENT FOR MENTAL PATIENTS CONFINED IN PENAL INSTITUTIONS, PROVISIONS RELATING TO COLLECTING DATA ON THE CAUSES AND PREVENTION OF MENTAL ILLNESS, PROVISIONS RELATING TO PROVIDING SURGICAL TREATMENT, AND PROVISIONS RELATING TO PROVIDING MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES IN THE AREAS OF MENTAL DEFECTIVENESS, EPILEPSY, DRUG ADDICTION, AND ALCOHOLISM; TO AMEND SECTION 44-9-100, RELATING TO DISCRETIONARY POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION, SO AS TO MAKE TECHNICAL CORRECTIONS; AND TO AMEND SECTIONS 44-22-220, 44-23-210, 44-23-250, AND 15-9-510, RELATING, RESPECTIVELY, TO GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES FOR MENTAL HEALTH PATIENTS, TO TRANSFER OF PATIENTS BETWEEN STATE FACILITIES, TO THE SIGNATURE OF THE SUPERINTENDENT OF A MENTAL HEALTH FACILITY, AND TO THE ACCEPTANCE OF SERVICE OF LEGAL PAPERS FOR PATIENTS BY THE SUPERINTENDENT OF A MENTAL HEALTH FACILITY, SO AS TO CONFORM THESE SECTIONS TO PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT AND TO MAKE TECHNICAL CORRECTIONS; AND TO REPEAL SECTION 44-11-80, RELATING TO THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION SETTING SALARIES OF DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES; AND TO REPEAL SECTION 44-23-30, RELATING TO THE AUTHORITY OF A NONRESIDENT PHYSICIAN TO EXAMINE A RESIDENT OF THIS STATE WHO IS VISITING OR RESIDING IN ANOTHER STATE.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 44-9-50 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-9-50. The Department of Mental Health may be divided into such divisions as may be authorized by the Director of Mental Health and approved by the commission.
These divisions may be headed by deputy commissioners, but any deputy commissioner heading a medical division must be a medical doctor duly licensed in South Carolina. One of the divisions shall be a Division on Alcohol and Drug Addiction which shall have primary responsibility in the State for treatment of alcohol and drug addicts. One of the divisions shall be a Division for Long-Term Care which shall have primary responsibility for care and treatment of elderly persons who are mentally and physically handicapped to the extent that their needs are not met in other facilities either public or private."
SECTION 2. Section 44-9-60 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-9-60. The Director of the Department of Mental Health may appoint a
superintendent chief executive officer of each hospital , with the approval of the Mental Health Commission. Each superintendent shall chief executive officer must be knowledgeable in the treatment of the mentally ill and in hospital administration. The superintendent chief executive officer of each institution hospital under the jurisdiction of the Department of Mental Health shall be is responsible for the employment of all personnel at the institution hospital, subject to the approval of the director of the department. The director may serve as superintendent chief executive officer of one or more hospitals or other mental health facilities."
SECTION 3. Section 44-9-90 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-9-90. The commission shall
have the following rights, powers and duties:
It shall form a body corporate in deed and in law with all the powers incident to corporations;
It shall cooperate with persons in charge of penal institutions in this State for the purpose of providing proper care and treatment for mental patients confined therein because of emergency;
(3) It shall inaugurate and maintain an appropriate mental health education and public relations program;
(4)(3) It shall collect statistics bearing on mental illness, drug addiction, and alcoholism , as well as study the cause, pathology, and prevention of mental defects and diseases;
(5)(4) It shall provide moral and vocational training and medical and surgical treatment which that will tend to the mental and physical betterment of patients and which that is designed to lessen the increase of mental illness, mental defectiveness, epilepsy, drug addiction, and alcoholism; and
(6)(5) It shall encourage the superintendents of institutions chief executive officers of hospitals and their medical staffs in the investigation and study of these subjects and of mental hygiene health treatment in general;
(7)(6) It shall provide a statewide system for the delivery of mental health services to treat, care for, reduce, and prevent mental illness and provide mental health services in the areas of mental defectiveness, epilepsy, drug addiction and alcoholism for citizens of this State, whether or not in an institution a hospital. The system shall must include services to prevent or postpone the commitment or recommitment of citizens to mental health institutions hospitals."
SECTION 4. Section 44-9-100 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-9-100. The commission may:
(1) prescribe the form of and information to be contained in applications, records, reports, and medical certificates provided for under this chapter, Chapter 11, Chapter 13, Article 1 of Chapter 15, Chapter 17, Chapter 22, Chapter 23, Chapter 24, Chapter 27, Chapter 48, and Chapter 52;
(2) require reports from the
superintendent of an institution chief executive officer of a state hospital relating to the admission, examination, diagnosis, discharge, or conditional discharge of a patient;
(3) investigate complaints made by a patient or by a person on behalf of a patient;
adopt promulgate 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, Chapter 48, 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, psychotic senile, drug addicted, or alcoholic treatment of persons with a mental illness or substance abuse disorder;
(5) take appropriate action to initiate and develop relationships and agreements with state, local, federal, and private agencies, hospitals, and clinics as it considers necessary to increase and enhance the accessibility and delivery of emergency and all other types of mental health services."
SECTION 5. Section 44-22-220 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-22-220. (A) The department shall develop a system for documenting and addressing grievances concerning patient rights. Grievances concerning patient rights must be
turned over to the Division of Quality Assurance-Standards, Advocacy, and Monitoring of the department for review reviewed by the department and a determination made concerning whether or not corrective action is warranted. A copy of the written grievance must be forwarded to the Client Advocacy Program and the South Carolina Protection and Advocacy System for the Handicapped People with Disabilities, Inc.
division department shall promulgate procedures with time lines to process expeditiously the grievances. The These procedures must be made known to patients.
(C) A person who wilfully causes, or conspires with or assists another to cause, the denial to a patient of rights accorded to him under this chapter, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both. A person acting in good faith, either upon actual knowledge or information thought to be reliable, is exempt from the criminal provisions of this section."
SECTION 6. Section 44-23-210 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-23-210. A person confined in a state institution or a person confined in a state or private mental health or mental retardation facility may be transferred to another mental health or mental retardation facility if:
superintendent director of a state institution not under the jurisdiction of the Department of Mental Health or the director chief executive officer of a treatment facility under the jurisdiction of the Department of Mental Health requests the admission of a person confined there to a state mental health facility if the person is suspected of being mentally ill. If after full examination by two designated examiners, one of whom must be a licensed physician, the director chief executive officer of the mental health facility is of the opinion that the person is mentally ill, the director chief executive officer shall notify the superintendent director of the institution or the director chief executive officer of the facility to which the person was admitted who shall commence proceedings pursuant to Sections 44-17-510 through 44-17-610;
director chief executive officer of a facility in which the patient resides determines that it would be consistent with the medical needs of the person, the Department of Mental Health may transfer or authorize the transfer of the patient from one facility to another. If the transfer is from a less restricted facility to a substantially more secure facility and the patient objects to the transfer, a hearing to give the patient a reasonable opportunity to contest the transfer must be held pursuant to Sections 44-17-540 through 44-17-570. When a patient is transferred, written notice must be given to the patient's legal guardian, attorney, parents, or spouse or, if none be known, to the patient's nearest known relative or friend. This section may not be construed to apply to transfers of a patient within a mental health facility; or
(3) the legal guardian, parent, spouse, relative, or friend of an involuntary patient submits a request for the transfer of the patient from one facility to another and the reasons for desiring the transfer to the Department of Mental Health and unless the Department of Mental Health reasonably determines that it
would be is inconsistent with the medical needs of the person, the transfer must be made. If the transfer is from a less restricted to a substantially more secure facility, item (2) governs."
SECTION 7. Section 44-23-250 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-23-250. Whenever reference is made requiring the signature of the superintendent or chief executive officer of any
institution state mental health facility, it shall mean means the superintendent chief executive officer or his designee."
SECTION 8. Section 15-9-510 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 15-9-510. The
superintendent chief executive officer of a state mental health facility shall must not accept service of legal papers , nor or consent to the appointment of a guardian ad litem , for any patient or trainee. When If a legal paper is served on a patient or trainee in a facility, a copy thereof shall of the legal paper must be filed with the superintendent chief executive officer who shall cause it the legal paper to be made a part of the permanent record of the person. The superintendent chief executive officer shall immediately, in writing, inform the court out of which the process issued of the date of service of the process, the procedure under which the patient or trainee was admitted to the facility, and the present mental and physical condition of the person."
SECTION 9. Sections 44-11-80 and 44-23-30 of the 1976 Code are repealed.
SECTION 10. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
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