2006 Louisiana Laws - RS 28:2 — Definitions

§2.  Definitions

Whenever used in this Title, the masculine shall include the feminine, the singular shall include the plural, and the following definitions shall apply:

(1)  "Conditional discharge" means the physical release of a judicially committed person from a treatment facility by the director or by the court.  The patient may be required to report for outpatient treatment as a condition of his release.  The judicial commitment of such persons shall remain in effect for a period of up to one hundred twenty days and during this time the person may be hospitalized involuntarily for appropriate medical reasons upon court order.

(2)  "Court" means any duly constituted district court or court having family or juvenile jurisdiction.  "Court" does not include a city court, which shall have no jurisdiction to commit persons to mental health treatment facilities in civil or criminal proceedings, except when exercising juvenile jurisdiction.

(3)  "Dangerous to others" means the condition of a person whose behavior or significant threats support a reasonable expectation that there is a substantial risk that he will inflict physical harm upon another person in the near future.

(4)  "Dangerous to self" means the condition of a person whose behavior, significant threats or inaction supports a reasonable expectation that there is a substantial risk that he will inflict physical or severe emotional harm upon his own person.

(5)  "Diagnosis" means the art and science of determining the presence of disease in an individual and distinguishing one disease from another.

(6)  "Director" or "superintendent" means a person in charge of a treatment facility or his deputy.

(7)  "Discharge" means the full or conditional release from a treatment facility of any person admitted or otherwise detained under this Chapter.

(8)  "Department" means the Department of Health and Hospitals.

(9)  "Formal voluntary admission" means the admission of a person suffering from mental illness or substance abuse desiring admission to a treatment facility for diagnosis and/or treatment of such condition who may be formally admitted upon his written request.  Such persons may be detained following a request for discharge pursuant to R.S. 28:52.2.

(10)  "Gravely disabled" means the condition of a person who is unable to provide for his own basic physical needs, such as essential food, clothing, medical care, and shelter, as a result of serious mental illness or substance abuse and is unable to survive safely in freedom or protect himself from serious harm; the term also includes incapacitation by alcohol, which means the condition of a person who, as a result of the use of alcohol, is unconscious or whose judgment is otherwise so impaired that he is incapable of realizing and making a rational decision with respect to his need for treatment.

(11)  "Informal voluntary admission" means the admission of a person suffering from mental illness or substance abuse, desiring admission to a treatment facility for diagnosis and/or treatment of such condition who may be admitted upon his request without making formal application.

(12)  "Major surgical procedure" means an invasive procedure of a serious nature with incision upon the body or parts thereof under general, local or spinal anesthesia, utilizing surgical instruments, for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment of a medical condition.  Diagnostic procedures, including, but not limited to, the following, shall not be considered as major surgical procedures:

(a)  Endoscopy through natural body openings, such as the mouth, anus, or urethra, to view the trachea, bronchi, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, small or large intestine, urethra, urinary bladder, or ureters, and to obtain from such organs specimens of fluids or tissues for chemical or microscopic analysis.

(b)  Sub-cutaneous percutaneous liver biopsy.

(c)  Punch biopsy of skeletal muscles.

(d)  Bone marrow biopsy.

(e)  Lumbar puncture.

(f)  Myelogram.

(g)  Thoracocentesis.

(h)  Abdominocentesis.

(i)  Conization of the uterine cervix.

(j)  Renal angiography.

(k)  Femoral angiography.

(l)  Carotid angiography.

(m)  Vertebral angiography.

(12.1)  "Medical psychologist" means a psychologist who has undergone specialized training in clinical psychopharmacology and has passed a national proficiency examination in psychopharmacology approved by the State Board of Examiners of Psychologists and who holds from the board a current certificate of prescriptive authority, as defined in R.S. 37:2371(2).  For the purposes of this Chapter a medical psychologist shall have at least three years training, primary experience, or both, in diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.

(13)  "Mental health advocacy service" means a service established by the state of Louisiana for the purpose of providing legal counsel and representation for mentally disabled persons and for children and to ensure that their legal rights are protected.

(14)  "Mentally ill person" means any person with a psychiatric disorder which has substantial adverse effects on his ability to function and who requires care and treatment.  It does not refer to a person suffering solely from mental retardation, epilepsy, alcoholism, or drug abuse.

(15)  "Minor" means a person under eighteen years of age.

(16)  "Parent" means a person who is the biological mother or father of an individual or the legally adoptive mother or father of an individual.

(17)  "Patient" means any person detained and taken care of as a mentally ill person or person suffering from substance abuse.

(18)  "Peace officer" means any sheriff, police officer, or other person deputized by proper authority to serve as a peace officer.

(19)  "Person of legal age" means any person eighteen years of age or older.

(20)  "Petition" means a written civil complaint filed by a person of legal age alleging that a person is mentally ill or suffering from substance abuse and requires judicial commitment to a treatment facility.

(21)  "Physician" means an individual licensed to practice medicine by the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners in active practice or an individual in a post-graduate medical training program of an accredited medical school in Louisiana or a medical officer similarly qualified by the government of the United States while in the state in the performance of his official duties.

(21.1)  "Primary care provider" means the principal, treating health care professional, excluding a physician, or psychiatrist, rendering mental health care services to a person including a psychologist, medical psychologist, or psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner.

(21.2)  "Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner" means an advanced practice registered nurse licensed to practice as a nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist by the Louisiana State Board of Nursing, in accordance with the provisions of R.S. 37:911, et seq., who focuses clinical practice on individuals, families, or populations across the life span at risk for developing or having a diagnosis of psychiatric disorders, mental health problems, or both.  A psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner means a specialist who provides primary mental health care to patients seeking mental health services in a wide range of settings.  Primary mental health care provided by a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner involves the continuous and comprehensive services necessary for the promotion of optimal mental health, prevention and treatment of psychiatric disorders, and health maintenance.  Such primary health care includes the assessment, diagnosis, and management of mental health problems and psychiatric disorders.  A psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner means a provider of direct mental health care services who synthesizes theoretical, scientific, and clinical knowledge for the assessment and management of both health and illness states and who is licensed to practice as a nurse practitioner in Louisiana, in accordance with R.S. 37:911, et seq.  For purposes of this Chapter, a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner shall have at least two years training, primary experience, or both, in diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.  For purposes of this Chapter, a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner shall also have authority from the Louisiana State Board of Nursing to prescribe legend and certain controlled drugs, in accordance with the provisions of R.S. 37:913(3)(b), (8), and (9).

(22)(a)  "Psychiatrist" means a physician who has at least three years of formal training or primary experience in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.

(b)  "Psychologist" means an individual licensed to practice psychology in Louisiana in accordance with R.S. 37:2351 et seq., and who has been engaged in the practice of a clinical specialty for not less than three years.

(23)  "Respondent" means a person alleged to be mentally ill or suffering from substance abuse and for whom an application for commitment to a treatment facility has been filed.

(24)  "Restraint" means the partial or total immobilization of any or all of the extremities or the torso by mechanical means for psychiatric indications.  Restraint does not include the use of mechanisms usually and customarily used during medical or surgical procedures, including but not limited to body immobilization during surgery and arm immobilization during intravenous administration.  Restraint does not include orthopedic appliances used to posturally support the patient, such as posies.

(25)  "Seclusion" means the involuntary confinement of a patient alone in a room where the patient is physically prevented from leaving for any period of time, except that seclusion does not include the placement of a patient alone in a room or other area for no more than thirty minutes at a time and no more than three hours in any twenty-four-hour period pursuant to behavior-shaping techniques, such as "time-out".

(26)  "Substance abuse" means the condition of a person who uses narcotic, stimulant, depressant, soporific, tranquilizing, or hallucinogenic drugs or alcohol to the extent that it renders the person dangerous to himself or others or renders the person gravely disabled.

(27)  "Transfer" means the removal of a patient from one mental institution to another without any procedure for admission other than is prescribed by the department.

(28)  "Treatment" means an active effort to accomplish an improvement in the mental condition or behavior of a patient or to prevent deterioration in his condition or behavior.  Treatment includes but is not limited to hospitalization, partial hospitalization, outpatient services, examination, diagnosis, training, the use of pharmaceuticals, and other services provided for patients by a treatment facility.

(29)(a)  "Treatment facility" means any public or private hospital, retreat, institution, mental health center, or facility licensed by the state in which any mentally ill person or person suffering from substance abuse is received or detained as a patient.  The term includes Veterans Administration and public health hospitals and forensic facilities.  "Treatment facility" includes but is not limited to the following, and shall be selected with consideration of first, medical suitability; second, least restriction of the person's liberty; third, nearness to the patient's usual residence; and fourth, financial or other status of the patient, except that such considerations shall not apply to forensic facilities:

(i)  Community mental health centers.

(ii)  Private clinics.

(iii)  Public or private halfway houses.

(iv)  Public or private nursing homes.

(v)  Public or private general hospitals.

(vi)  Public or private mental hospitals.

(vii)  Detoxification centers.

(viii)  Substance abuse clinics.

(ix)  Substance abuse in-patient facility.

(x)  Forensic facilities.

(b)  Patients involuntarily hospitalized by emergency certificate or mental health treatment shall not be admitted to the facilities listed in Items (ii), (iii), (iv), (viii), or (x) of Subparagraph (a), except that patients in custody of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections may be admitted to forensic facilities by emergency certificate provided that judicial commitment proceedings are initiated during the period of treatment at the forensic facility authorized by emergency certificate.  Patients involuntarily hospitalized by emergency certificate for substance abuse treatment shall not be admitted to the facilities listed in Items (ii), (iii), (iv), or (x) of Subparagraph (a).  Judicial commitments, however, may be made to any of the above facilities except forensic facilities.  However, in the case of any involuntary hospitalization as a result of such emergency certificate for substance abuse or in the case of any judicial commitment as the result of substance abuse, such commitment or hospitalization may be made to any of the above facilities, except forensic facilities, provided that such facility has a substance abuse in-patient operation maintained separate and apart from any mental health in-patient operation at such facility.

(c)  "Treatment facility" shall not include a jail or prison of any kind, or any facility under the control or supervision of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections unless the facility has been designated by the Department of Health and Hospitals and the Department of Public Safety and Corrections as a treatment facility pursuant to R.S. 15:830.1(B); however, a jail or prison shall not be construed as a forensic facility.  Only adult inmates sentenced to the Department of Public Safety and Corrections may be admitted to a treatment facility designated pursuant to R.S. 15:830.1(B).

Amended by Acts 1972, No. 154, §2; Acts 1974, No. 294, §1; Acts 1976, No. 614, §2, eff. Aug. 4, 1976; Acts 1977, No. 714, §1; Acts 1978, No. 680, §1; Acts 1978, No. 782, §1, eff. July 17, 1978; Acts 1978, No. 786, §33, eff. July 17, 1978; Acts 1979, No. 767, §1; Acts 1982, No. 308, §1; Acts 1982, No. 501, §1; Acts 1983, No. 448, §1; Acts 1985, No. 197, §1., eff. July 6, 1985; Acts 1987, No. 96, §2; Acts 1992, No. 120, §1; Acts 1995, No. 1287, §1, eff. June 29, 1995; Acts 1997, No. 985, §1; Acts 2006, No. 271, §3; Acts 2006, No. 664, §1.

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