Text: SF130            Text: SF132
Complete Bill History


Senate File 131

SENATE FILE BY TINSMAN Passed Senate, Date Passed House, Date Vote: Ayes Nays Vote: Ayes Nays Approved A BILL FOR 1 An Act providing for judicial branch employment and compensation 2 of patient advocates for persons involuntarily hospitalized 3 for mental illness. 4 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA: 5 TLSB 1326SS 81 6 jp/sh/8 PAG LIN 1 1 Section 1. Section 225C.4, subsection 1, paragraph m, Code 1 2 2005, is amended to read as follows: 1 3 m. Provide consultation and technical assistance to 1 4 patients' patient advocates appointed pursuant to section 1 5 229.19, in cooperation with the judicial branch and the 1 6 resident advocate committees appointed for health care 1 7 facilities pursuant to section 135C.25. 1 8 Sec. 2. Section 226.31, Code 2005, is amended to read as 1 9 follows: 1 10 226.31 EXAMINATION BY COURT == NOTICE. 1 11 Before granting the order authorized in section 226.30 the 1 12 court or judge shall investigate the allegations of the 1 13 petition and before proceeding to a hearing on the allegations 1 14 shall require notice to be served on the attorney who 1 15 represented the patient in any prior proceedings under 1 16 sections 229.6 to 229.15 or the patient advocate appointed 1 17 under section 229.19, or in the case of a patient who entered 1 18 the hospital voluntarily, on any relative, friend, or guardian 1 19 of the person in question of the filing of the application. 1 20 At the hearing the court or judge shall appoint a guardian ad 1 21 litem for the person, if the court or judge deems such action 1 22 necessary to protect the rights of the person. The guardian 1 23 ad litem shall be a practicing attorney. 1 24 Sec. 3. Section 229.2, subsection 1, paragraph f, Code 1 25 2005, is amended to read as follows: 1 26 f. Upon approval of the admission of a minor over the 1 27 minor's objections, the juvenile court shall appoint an 1 28 individual to act as an a patient advocate representing the 1 29 interests of the minor in the same manner as an a patient 1 30 advocate representing the interests of patients involuntarily 1 31 hospitalized pursuant to section 229.19 under this chapter. 1 32 Sec. 4. Section 229.9A, Code 2005, is amended to read as 1 33 follows: 1 34 229.9A PATIENT ADVOCATE INFORMED. 1 35 The court shall direct the clerk to furnish the patient 2 1 advocate of for the respondent's county of legal settlement 2 2 with a copy of the application and any order issued pursuant 2 3 to section 229.8, subsection 3. The patient advocate may 2 4 attend the hospitalization hearing of any respondent for whom 2 5 the patient advocate has received notice of a hospitalization 2 6 hearing. 2 7 Sec. 5. Section 229.12, subsection 2, Code 2005, is 2 8 amended to read as follows: 2 9 2. All persons not necessary for the conduct of the 2 10 proceeding shall be excluded, except that the court may admit 2 11 persons having a legitimate interest in the proceeding and 2 12 shall permit the patient advocate from the respondent's county 2 13 of legal settlement to attend the hearing. Upon motion of the 2 14 county attorney, the judge may exclude the respondent from the 2 15 hearing during the testimony of any particular witness if the 2 16 judge determines that witness's testimony is likely to cause 2 17 the respondent severe emotional trauma. 2 18 Sec. 6. Section 229.14A, subsection 1, Code 2005, is 2 19 amended to read as follows: 2 20 1. With respect to a chief medical officer's report made 2 21 pursuant to section 229.14, subsection 1, paragraph "b", "c", 2 22 or "d", or any other provision of this chapter related to 2 23 involuntary commitment for which the court issues a placement 2 24 order or a transfer of placement is authorized, the court 2 25 shall provide notice to the respondent and the respondent's 2 26 attorney or mental health patient advocate appointed pursuant 2 27 to section 229.19 concerning the placement order and the 2 28 respondent's right to request a placement hearing to determine 2 29 if the order for placement or transfer of placement is 2 30 appropriate. 2 31 Sec. 7. Section 229.15, subsection 5, Code 2005, is 2 32 amended to read as follows: 2 33 5. Upon receipt of any report required or authorized by 2 34 this section the court shall furnish a copy to the patient's 2 35 attorney, or alternatively to the patient advocate appointed 3 1 as required by section 229.19. The court shall examine the 3 2 report and take the action thereon which it on the report as 3 3 the court deems appropriate. Should the court fail to receive 3 4 any report required by this section or section 229.14 at the 3 5 time the report is due, the court shall investigate the reason 3 6 for the failure to report and take whatever action may be 3 7 necessary in the matter. 3 8 Sec. 8. Section 229.19, Code 2005, is amended to read as 3 9 follows: 3 10 229.19 PATIENT ADVOCATES == DUTIES == COMPENSATION == 3 11 STATE AND COUNTY LIABILITY. 3 12 1. The district court in each county with a population of 3 13 under three hundred thousand inhabitants and the board of 3 14 supervisors in each county with a population of three hundred 3 15 thousand or more inhabitants The supreme court shall appoint 3 16 provide for the appointment for each county of an individual 3 17 who has demonstrated by prior activities an informed concern 3 18 for the welfare and rehabilitation of persons with mental 3 19 illness, and who is not an officer or employee of the 3 20 department of human services nor or of any agency or facility 3 21 providing care or treatment to persons with mental illness, to 3 22 act as patient advocate representing for the county. A 3 23 patient advocate shall represent the interests of patients 3 24 involuntarily hospitalized by the court, in any matter 3 25 relating to the patients' hospitalization or treatment under 3 26 section 229.14 or 229.15. 3 27 2. The court or, if the advocate is appointed by the 3 28 county board of supervisors, the board shall assign the 3 29 patient advocate appointed from for a patient's county of 3 30 legal settlement to represent the interests of the patient. 3 31 If a patient has no county of legal settlement, the court or, 3 32 if the advocate is appointed by the county board of 3 33 supervisors, the board shall assign the patient advocate 3 34 appointed from for the county where the hospital or facility 3 35 is located to represent the interests of the patient. 4 1 3. The patient advocate's responsibility with respect to 4 2 any a patient shall begin at whatever the time the attorney 4 3 employed or appointed to represent that patient as respondent 4 4 in hospitalization proceedings, conducted under sections 229.6 4 5 to 229.13 this chapter, reports to the court that the 4 6 attorney's services are no longer required and requests the 4 7 court's approval to withdraw as counsel for that patient. 4 8 However, if the patient is found to be seriously mentally 4 9 impaired at the hospitalization hearing, the attorney 4 10 representing the patient shall automatically be relieved of 4 11 responsibility in the case and an a patient advocate shall be 4 12 assigned to the patient at the conclusion of the hearing 4 13 unless the attorney indicates an intent to continue the 4 14 attorney's services and the court so directs. If the court 4 15 directs the attorney to remain on the case the attorney shall 4 16 assume all the duties of an a patient advocate. The clerk 4 17 shall furnish the patient advocate with a copy of the court's 4 18 order approving the withdrawal and shall inform the patient of 4 19 the name of the patient's advocate. 4 20 4. With regard to each patient whose interests the patient 4 21 advocate is required to represent pursuant to this section, 4 22 the patient advocate's duties shall include all of the 4 23 following: 4 24 1. a. To review each report submitted pursuant to 4 25 sections 229.14 and 229.15. 4 26 2. b. If the patient advocate is not an attorney, to 4 27 advise the court at any time it appears that the services of 4 28 an attorney are required to properly safeguard the patient's 4 29 interests. 4 30 3. c. To make the advocate be readily accessible to 4 31 communications from the patient and to originate 4 32 communications with the patient within five days of the 4 33 patient's commitment. 4 34 4. d. To visit the patient within fifteen days of the 4 35 patient's commitment and periodically thereafter. 5 1 5. e. To communicate with medical personnel treating the 5 2 patient and to review the patient's medical records pursuant 5 3 to section 229.25. 5 4 6. f. To file with the court quarterly reports, and 5 5 additional reports as the patient advocate feels necessary or 5 6 as required by the court, in a form prescribed by the court. 5 7 The reports shall state what actions the patient advocate has 5 8 taken with respect to each patient and the amount of time 5 9 spent. 5 10 5. The hospital or facility to which a patient is 5 11 committed shall grant all reasonable requests of the patient 5 12 advocate to visit the patient, to communicate with medical 5 13 personnel treating the patient, and to review the patient's 5 14 medical records pursuant to section 229.25. An A patient 5 15 advocate shall not disseminate information from a patient's 5 16 medical records to any other person unless done for official 5 17 purposes in connection with the patient advocate's duties 5 18 pursuant to this chapter or when as required by law. 5 19 6. The court or, if the advocate is appointed by the 5 20 county board of supervisors, the board supreme court shall 5 21 prescribe reasonable compensation policies for the services of 5 22 the advocate patient advocates. The compensation shall may, 5 23 in part, be based upon the reports filed by the patient 5 24 advocate with the court. The advocate's compensation shall be 5 25 paid by the county in which the court is located, either on 5 26 order of the court or, if the advocate is appointed by the 5 27 county board of supervisors, on the direction of the board. 5 28 If the advocate is appointed by the court, the advocate is an 5 29 employee of the state for purposes of chapter 669. If the 5 30 advocate is appointed by the county board of supervisors, the 5 31 advocate is an employee of the county for purposes of chapter 5 32 670. 5 33 7. If the patient or the person who is legally liable for 5 34 the patient's support is not indigent, the board judicial 5 35 branch shall recover the costs of compensating the patient 6 1 advocate from that person. If that person has an income level 6 2 as determined pursuant to section 815.9 greater than one 6 3 hundred percent but not more than one hundred fifty percent of 6 4 the poverty guidelines, at least one hundred dollars of the 6 5 patient advocate's compensation shall be recovered in the 6 6 manner prescribed by the county board of supervisors supreme 6 7 court. If that person has an income level as determined 6 8 pursuant to section 815.9 greater than one hundred fifty 6 9 percent of the poverty guidelines, at least two hundred 6 10 dollars of the patient advocate's compensation shall be 6 11 recovered in substantially the same manner prescribed by the 6 12 county board of supervisors as provided in section 815.7 6 13 815.9. 6 14 Sec. 9. Section 229.25, subsection 1, Code 2005, is 6 15 amended to read as follows: 6 16 1. The information is requested by a licensed physician, 6 17 attorney, or patient advocate who provides the chief medical 6 18 officer with a written waiver signed by the person about whom 6 19 the information is sought. 6 20 Sec. 10. Section 602.1102, Code 2005, is amended by adding 6 21 the following new subsection: 6 22 NEW SUBSECTION. 6A. Patient advocates appointed pursuant 6 23 to section 229.19. 6 24 Sec. 11. ACCRUED EMPLOYEE RIGHTS. 6 25 1. Patient advocates appointed pursuant to section 229.19 6 26 shall become employees of the judicial branch effective July 6 27 1, 2005, and the judicial branch shall assume all costs 6 28 associated with the functions of the patient advocates on that 6 29 date. Patient advocates who were paid salaries by the 6 30 counties immediately prior to becoming state employees as a 6 31 result of this Act shall not forfeit accrued vacation, accrued 6 32 sick leave, or longevity, except as provided in this section. 6 33 2. The supreme court, after consulting with the department 6 34 of administrative services, shall prescribe rules to provide 6 35 for the following: 7 1 a. A person referred to in subsection 1 shall have to the 7 2 person's credit as a state employee commencing on the date of 7 3 becoming a state employee the number of accrued vacation days 7 4 that was credited to the person as a county employee as of the 7 5 end of the day prior to becoming a state employee. 7 6 b. Each person referred to in subsection 1 shall have to 7 7 the person's credit as a state employee commencing on the date 7 8 of becoming a state employee the number of accrued days of 7 9 sick leave that was credited to the person as a county 7 10 employee as of the end of the day prior to becoming a state 7 11 employee. However, the number of days of sick leave credited 7 12 to a person under this subsection and eligible to be taken 7 13 when sick or eligible to be received upon retirement shall not 7 14 respectively exceed the maximum number of days, if any, or the 7 15 maximum dollar amount as provided in section 70A.23 that state 7 16 employees generally are entitled to accrue or receive 7 17 according to rules in effect as of the date the person becomes 7 18 a state employee, except as otherwise provided in section 7 19 602.1401. 7 20 c. Commencing on the date of becoming a state employee, 7 21 each person referred to in subsection 1 is entitled to claim 7 22 the person's most recent continuous period of service in full= 7 23 time county employment as full=time state employment for 7 24 purposes of determining the number of days of vacation which 7 25 the person is entitled to earn each year. The actual vacation 7 26 benefit, including the limitation on the maximum accumulated 7 27 vacation leave, shall be determined as provided in section 7 28 70A.1 according to rules in effect for state employees of 7 29 comparable longevity, irrespective of any greater or lesser 7 30 benefit as a county employee. 7 31 3. Persons referred to in subsection 1 who were covered by 7 32 county employee life insurance and accident and health 7 33 insurance plans prior to becoming state employees as a result 7 34 of this Act shall be permitted to apply prior to becoming 7 35 state employees for life insurance and health and accident 8 1 insurance plans that are available to state employees so that 8 2 those persons do not suffer a lapse of insurance coverage as a 8 3 result of this Act. The supreme court, after consulting with 8 4 the department of administrative services, shall prescribe 8 5 rules and distribute application forms and take other actions 8 6 as necessary to enable those persons to elect to have 8 7 insurance coverage that is in effect on the date of becoming 8 8 state employees. The actual insurance coverage available to a 8 9 person shall be determined by the plans that are available to 8 10 state employees, irrespective of any greater or lesser 8 11 benefits as a county employee. 8 12 4. Commencing on the date of becoming a state employee, 8 13 each person referred to in subsection 1 is entitled to claim 8 14 the person's most recent continuous period of service in full= 8 15 time county employment as full=time state employment for 8 16 purposes of determining disability benefits as provided in 8 17 section 70A.20 according to rules in effect for state 8 18 employees of comparable longevity, irrespective of any greater 8 19 or lesser benefit as a county employee. 8 20 EXPLANATION 8 21 This bill provides for judicial branch appointment and 8 22 compensation of patient advocates for persons who have been 8 23 involuntarily hospitalized for mental illness. Under current 8 24 law, except in counties with a population of 300,000 or more 8 25 where the patient advocate is appointed by the county board of 8 26 supervisors, the district court appoints the advocate but the 8 27 compensation is paid by the county. 8 28 Code section 602.1102 is amended to include patient 8 29 advocates in the list of employment positions that make up the 8 30 judicial branch. 8 31 The bill also amends other Code sections to conform usage 8 32 of the term "patient advocate". A person who was employed by 8 33 a county in service as a patient advocate but who becomes a 8 34 court employee as a result of the bill retains accrued 8 35 vacation, accrued sick leave, and longevity credit as provided 9 1 in a transition section included in the bill. 9 2 LSB 1326SS 81 9 3 jp:rj/sh/8
Text: SF130            Text: SF132 Complete Bill History