(a) Each person admitted to a facility for 72-hour treatment and evaluation under the provisions of this article shall receive an evaluation as soon as possible after he or she is admitted and shall receive whatever treatment and care his or her condition requires for the full period that he or she is held. The person shall be released before 72 hours have elapsed only if the psychiatrist directly responsible for the person’s treatment believes, as a result of the psychiatrist’s personal observations, that the person no longer requires evaluation or treatment. However, in those situations in which both a psychiatrist and psychologist have personally evaluated or examined a person who is placed under a 72-hour hold and there is a collaborative treatment relationship between the psychiatrist and psychologist, either the psychiatrist or psychologist may authorize the release of the person from the hold, but only after they have consulted with one another. In the event of a clinical or professional disagreement regarding the early release of a person who has been placed under a 72-hour hold, the hold shall be maintained unless the facility’s medical director overrules the decision of the psychiatrist or psychologist opposing the release. Both the psychiatrist and psychologist shall enter their findings, concerns, or objections into the person’s medical record. If any other professional person who is authorized to release the person believes the person should be released before 72 hours have elapsed, and the psychiatrist directly responsible for the person’s treatment objects, the matter shall be referred to the medical director of the facility for the final decision. However, if the medical director is not a psychiatrist, he or she shall appoint a designee who is a psychiatrist. If the matter is referred, the person shall be released before 72 hours have elapsed only if the psychiatrist making the final decision believes, as a result of the psychiatrist’s personal observations, that the person no longer requires evaluation or treatment.
(b) Any person who has been detained for evaluation and treatment shall be released, referred for further care and treatment on a voluntary basis, or certified for intensive treatment, or a conservator or temporary conservator shall be appointed pursuant to this part as required.
(c) A person designated by the mental health facility shall give to any person who has been detained at that facility for evaluation and treatment and who is receiving medication as a result of his or her mental illness, as soon as possible after detention, written and oral information about the probable effects and possible side effects of the medication. The State Department of Health Care Services shall develop and promulgate written materials on the effects of medications, for use by county mental health programs as disseminated or as modified by the county mental health program, addressing the probable effects and the possible side effects of the medication. The following information shall be given orally to the patient:
(1) The nature of the mental illness, or behavior, that is the reason the medication is being given or recommended.
(2) The likelihood of improving or not improving without the medication.
(3) Reasonable alternative treatments available.
(4) The name and type, frequency, amount, and method of dispensing the medication, and the probable length of time the medication will be taken.
The fact that the information has or has not been given shall be indicated in the patient’s chart. If the information has not been given, the designated person shall document in the patient’s chart the justification for not providing the information. A failure to give information about the probable effects and possible side effects of the medication shall not constitute new grounds for release.
(d) The amendments to this section made by Assembly Bill 348 of the 2003–04 Regular Session shall not be construed to revise or expand the scope of practice of psychologists, as defined in Chapter 6.6 (commencing with Section 2900) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code.
(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 34, Sec. 81. (SB 1009) Effective June 27, 2012.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018