Was it legal for the mental health hospital to hold me against my will?

Full Question:

I was a voluntary patient twice in a mental health hospital. I requested to leave and was held 14 days one time 9 days the next. I was never offered the form of my intention to leave, and later found out they didn't even have the form or know what it was. Was this illegal to hold me?
02/13/2009   |   Category: Mental Health   |   State: Michigan   |   #15241

Answer:

The following are Michigan statutes:

330.1402a Treatment of private-pay patients by licensed hospital.

Sec. 402a. A licensed hospital may admit and treat voluntary or
involuntary private-pay patients without complying with the preadmission
screening requirements of section 410 or consulting with the community
mental health services program before release or discharge of the
patient, if no state, county, or community mental health services program
funds are obligated for the services provided by the licensed hospital,
including aftercare services. All other provisions of this code regarding
involuntary admission and recipient rights apply to the provision of
services by licensed hospitals.

330.1404 Forms.

Sec. 404. The department shall prescribe the forms to be used under
this chapter, and all hospitals shall use department forms. Forms that
may be used in court proceedings under this chapter shall be subject to
the approval of the supreme court.

330.1406 Voluntary hospitalization; notice to court; dismissal.

Sec. 406. If an individual asserted to be a person requiring treatment
is considered by a hospital to be suitable for informal or formal
voluntary hospitalization, the hospital shall offer the individual the
opportunity to request or make application for hospitalization as an
informal or formal voluntary patient. If the individual is voluntarily
hospitalized, the hospital director shall inform the court, and the court
shall dismiss any pending proceeding for admission unless it finds that
dismissal would not be in the best interest of the individual or the
public.

330.1408 Return of patient to hospital; conditions; notification of peace
officers; protective custody; notice of opportunity to appeal.

Sec. 408.

(1) An individual is subject to being returned to a hospital
if both of the following circumstances exist:

(a) The individual was admitted to the hospital by judicial order.

(b) The individual has left the hospital without authorization, or
has refused a lawful request to return to the hospital while on an
authorized leave or other authorized absence from the hospital.

(2) The hospital director may notify peace officers that an individual
is subject to being returned to the hospital. Upon notification by the
hospital director, a peace officer shall take the individual into
protective custody and return the individual to the hospital unless
contrary directions have been given by the hospital director.

(3) An opportunity for appeal, and notice of that opportunity,
shall be provided to an individual who objects to being returned
from any authorized leave in excess of 10 days.

330.1410 Informal or formal voluntary admission; authorization by
preadmission screening unit.

Sec. 410.

Except as otherwise provided in section 402a, an individual who
requests, applies for, or assents to either informal or formal voluntary
admission to a hospital operated by the department or a hospital under
contract with a community mental health services program may be
considered for admission by the hospital only after authorization by a
community mental health services preadmission screening unit.

330.1411 Informal voluntary hospitalization; request.

Sec. 411. Subject to section 410, an individual 18 years of age or over
may be hospitalized as an informal voluntary patient if he or she
requests hospitalization as an informal voluntary patient and if the
hospital director considers the individual to be clinically suitable for
that form of hospitalization. Unless the hospital requires that the
request be made in writing, the individual may make the request orally.

330.1412 Informal voluntary hospitalization; termination; notice.

Sec. 412. An informal voluntary patient shall be allowed to terminate
his hospitalization and leave the hospital at any time during the normal
day shift hours of the hospital, and the hospital shall so inform the
patient at the time he is hospitalized. The patient shall inform the
person in charge of his ward or other appropriate person of his decision
to terminate his hospitalization and leave the hospital.

330.1415 Formal voluntary hospitalization; execution of application.

Sec. 415.

Subject to section 410, an individual 18 years of age or over may be
hospitalized as a formal voluntary patient if the individual executes an
application for hospitalization as a formal voluntary patient or the
individual assents and the full guardian of the individual, the limited
guardian with authority to admit, or a patient advocate authorized by the
individual to make mental health treatment decisions under the estates
and protected individuals code, 1998 PA 386, MCL 700.1101 to 700.8102,
executes an application for hospitalization and if the hospital director
considers the individual to be clinically suitable for that form of
hospitalization.

330.1416 Formal voluntary hospitalization; contents of application;
communication of rights; copies of application.

Sec. 416. The formal application shall contain in large type and simple
language the substance of sections 419 and 420. Upon hospitalization, the
rights set forth in the application shall be orally communicated to the
patient and to the individual who executed the application. In addition, a
copy of the application shall be given to the patient and the individual
who executed the application and to 1 other individual designated by the
patient.

330.1419 Termination of formal voluntary hospitalization; notice;
time limitation; written form.

Sec. 419.

(1) Except as is provided in section 420, a formal voluntary
patient 18 years of age or over shall not be hospitalized more than 3
days, excluding Sundays and holidays, after the patient gives written
notice of an intention to terminate his or her hospitalization and leave
the hospital.

(2) When the hospital is told of an intention to terminate
hospitalization under subsection (1), it shall promptly supply the
written form which is required.

330.1420 Continuing hospitalization where notice of termination not
withdrawn; application to court; clinical certificates; hearings.

Sec. 420. If a written notice of termination of hospitalization is
given to a hospital under section 419, if the notice is not withdrawn,
and if the hospital director determines that the patient is a person
requiring treatment as defined in section 401 and should remain in the
hospital, the hospital director or other suitable person shall within 3
days, excluding Sundays and holidays, after the hospital's receipt of the
notice, file an application with the court that complies with
section 423. The application shall be accompanied by 1 clinical certificate
executed by a psychiatrist and 1 clinical certificate executed by either
a physician or a licensed psychologist. If an application is filed, the
hospital may continue hospitalization of the patient pending hearings
convened pursuant to sections 451 to 465.

330.1422 Receipt and detention of individuals under §§ 330.1427 or
330.1428; designation of hospitals.

Sec. 422.

(1) Each community mental health services program shall designate
the hospitals with which it has a contract to receive and detain
individuals under section 427 or 428.

(2) Each community mental health services program shall give notice of
the hospitals designated under subsection (1) to the department and to
the probate court of each county in the program's service area.

(3) The department shall designate those hospitals that are required to
receive and detain individuals presented for examination under
section 427 or 428.

330.1448 Right to copy of certain documents; explanation in individual's
language; consent to treatment by person awaiting hearing; form.

Sec. 448.

(1) Not later than 12 hours after an individual is
hospitalized under section 423 or 438, the hospital director shall ensure
that the individual receives all of the following:

(a) A copy of the application or petition that asserted that the
individual is a person requiring treatment.

(b) A written statement explaining that the individual will be examined
by a psychiatrist within 24 hours after his or her hospitalization,
excluding legal holidays.

(c) A written statement in simple terms explaining the rights of the
individual to a full court hearing pursuant to sections 451 to 465, to be
present at the hearing, to be represented by legal counsel, to a jury
trial, and to an independent clinical evaluation.

(2) If the individual is unable to read or understand the written
materials, every effort shall be made to explain them to him or her in a
language he or she understands, and a note of the explanation and by whom
made shall be entered into his or her patient record.

(3) An individual awaiting a court hearing mandated pursuant to section
452 may sign a form provided by the department accepting psychotropic
drugs and other treatment without having to consent to the
hospitalization, unless the hospital director has reason to believe the
individual is not capable of giving informed consent to treatment.

330.1476 Discretionary discharge; mandatory discharge; notice;
statements.

Sec. 476.

(1) The hospital director may at any time discharge a
voluntarily or judicially hospitalized patient whom the hospital
director considers clinically suitable for discharge.

(2) The hospital director shall discharge a patient hospitalized by
court order when the patient's mental condition is such that he or she no
longer meets the criteria of a person requiring treatment.

(3) If a patient discharged under subsection (1) or (2) has been
hospitalized by court order, or if court proceedings are pending,
the court shall be notified of the discharge by the hospital.

(4) If the court orders a person to be hospitalized under an initial or
continuing order for hospitalization subsequent to dismissal of felony
charges under section 1044(1)(b), the court shall include both of the
following statements in the initial or continuing order unless the time
for petitioning to refile charges under section 1044 has elapsed:

(a) A requirement that not less than 30 days before the patient's
scheduled release or discharge, the director of the treating facility
shall notify the prosecutor's office in the county in which charges
against the person were originally brought that the patient's release or
discharge is pending.

(b) A requirement that not less than 30 days before the scheduled
release or discharge, the patient to be released or discharged undergo a
competency examination as described in section 1026. A copy of the
written report of the examination along with the notice required in
subdivision (a) shall be submitted to the prosecutor's office in the
county in which the charges against the patient were originally brought.
The written report is admissible as provided in section 1030(3).

330.1477 Termination of treatment; notice.

Sec. 477.

(1) A person responsible for providing treatment to an
individual ordered to undergo a program of alternative treatment or a
program of combined hospitalization and alternative treatment may
terminate the treatment to the individual if the provider of the
treatment considers the individual clinically suitable for termination of
treatment, and shall terminate the treatment when the individual's mental
condition is such that he or she no longer meets the criteria of a person
requiring treatment.

(2) Upon termination of alternative treatment or combined
hospitalization and alternative treatment, the court shall be notified by
the provider of the treatment.

330.1478 Treatment on voluntary basis; aid in obtaining other treatment.

Sec. 478. If, upon the discharge of a patient hospitalized by court
order or the termination of alternative treatment to an individual
receiving alternative treatment pursuant to this chapter, it is
determined that the individual would benefit from the receipt of further
treatment, the hospital or provider of alternative treatment shall offer
him appropriate treatment on a voluntary basis, or shall aid him to
obtain treatment from another source.

330.1479 Leaves or absence from hospital; rules; procedures; mandatory
discharge; notice.

Sec. 479. All leaves or absences from a hospital, other than release or
discharge, and all revocations of leaves and absences under section 408,
shall be governed in accordance with rules or procedures established by
the department or the hospital; except that a hospital director shall
discharge any patient who has been hospitalized subject to an order of
continuing hospitalization and who has been on an authorized leave or
absence from the hospital for a continuous period of 1 year. Upon such
discharge, the hospital director shall notify the court.

330.1490 Persons entitled to copies of § 330.1489.

Sec. 490. Individuals receiving involuntary mental health treatment
under this chapter shall receive a copy of section 489 upon the
commencement of involuntary mental health treatment. An individual
discharged from a hospital shall receive a copy of section 489 upon
request.

330.1774 Appeals committee.

Sec. 774.

(1) The director shall appoint an appeals committee
consisting of 7 individuals, none of whom shall be employed by the
department or a community mental health services program, to hear appeals
of recipient rights matters. The committee shall include at least 3
members of the state recipient rights advisory committee and 2 primary
consumers.

(2) The board of a community mental health services program shall
do 1 of the following:

(a) Appoint an appeals committee consisting of 7 individuals, none of
whom shall be employed by the department or a community mental health
services program, to hear appeals of recipients' rights matters. The
appeals committee shall include at least 3 members of the recipient
rights advisory committee, 2 board members, and 2 primary consumers.
A member of the appeals committee may represent more than 1 of these
categories.

(b) Designate the recipient rights advisory committee as the appeals
committee.

(3) The governing body of a licensed hospital shall designate the
appeals committee of the local community mental health services program to
hear an appeal of a decision on a recipient rights matter brought by or
on behalf of a recipient of that community mental health services
program.

(4) The governing body of a licensed hospital shall do 1 of the
following with respect to an appeal of a decision on a recipient
rights matter brought by or on behalf of an individual who is not
a recipient of a community mental health services program:

(a) Appoint an appeals committee consisting of 7 members, none of whom
shall be employed by the department or a community mental health services
program, 2 of whom shall be primary consumers and 2 of whom shall be
community members.

(b) By agreement with the department, designate the appeals committee
appointed by the department to hear appeals of rights complaints brought
against the licensed hospital.

(5) An appeals committee appointed under this section may request
consultation and technical assistance from the department.

(6) A member of an appeals committee who has a personal or professional
relationship with an individual involved in an appeal shall abstain from
participating in that appeal as a member of the committee.

330.1776 Rights complaint; filing; contents; recording; acknowledgment;
notice; assistance; conduct of investigation.

Sec. 776.

(1) A recipient, or another individual on behalf of a
recipient, may file a rights complaint with the office alleging a
violation of this act or rules promulgated under this act.

(2) A rights complaint shall contain all of the following information:

(a) A statement of the allegations that give rise to the dispute.


(b) A statement of the right or rights that may have been violated.


(c) The outcome that the complainant is seeking as a resolution to
the complaint.


(3) Each rights complaint shall be recorded upon receipt by the
office, and acknowledgment of the recording shall be sent along with a
copy of the complaint to the complainant within 5 business days.

(4) Within 5 business days after the office receives a complaint, it
shall notify the complainant if it determines that no investigation of
the rights complaint is warranted.

(5) The office shall assist the recipient or other individual with the
complaint process. The office shall advise the recipient or other
individual that there are advocacy organizations available to assist in
preparation of a written rights complaint and shall offer to refer the
recipient or other individual to those organizations. In the absence of
assistance from an advocacy organization, the office shall assist in
preparing a written rights complaint. The office shall inform the
recipient or other individual of the option of mediation under
section 786.

(6) If a rights complaint has been filed regarding the conduct of the
executive director, the rights investigation shall be conducted by the
office of another community mental health services program or by the
state office of recipient rights as decided by the board.

330.1778 Investigation; initiation; recording; standard of proof;
written status report; written investigative report; new evidence.

Sec. 778.

(1) The office shall initiate investigation of apparent or
suspected rights violations in a timely and efficient manner. Subject to
delays involving pending action by external agencies as described in
subsection (5), the office shall complete the investigation not later
than 90 days after it receives the rights complaint. Investigation shall
be initiated immediately in cases involving alleged abuse, neglect,
serious injury, or death of a re
cipient involving an apparent or
suspected rights violation.

(2) Investigation activities for each rights complaint shall be
accurately recorded by the office.

(3) The office shall determine whether a right was violated by
using the preponderance of the evidence as its standard of proof.

(4) The office shall issue a written status report every 30 calendar
days during the course of the investigation. The report shall be
submitted to the complainant, the respondent, and the responsible mental
health agency. A status report shall include all of the following:

(a) Statement of the allegations.


(b) Statement of the issues involved.


(c) Citations to relevant provisions of this act, rules, policies,
and guidelines.


(d) Investigative progress to date.


(e) Expected date for completion of the investigation.

(5) Upon completion of the investigation, the office shall submit a
written investigative report to the respondent and to the responsible
mental health agency. Issuance of the written investigative report may be
delayed pending completion of investigations that involve external
agencies, including law enforcement agencies and the department of social
services. The report shall include all of the following:

(a) Statement of the allegations.


(b) Statement of the issues involved.


(c) Citations to relevant provisions of this act, rules, policies,
and guidelines.


(d) Investigative findings.


(e) Conclusions.


(f) Recommendations, if any.

(6) A rights investigation may be reopened or reinvestigated by
the office if there is new evidence that was not presented at the
time of the investigation.

330.1780 Remedial action.

Sec. 780.

(1) If it has been determined through investigation that
a right has been violated, the respondent shall take appropriate
remedial action that meets all of the following requirements:

(a) Corrects or provides a remedy for the rights violations.


(b) Is implemented in a timely manner.


(c) Attempts to prevent a recurrence of the rights violation.


(2) The action shall be documented and made part of the record
maintained by the office.

330.1782 Summary report.

Sec. 782.

(1) The executive director, hospital director, or director of
a state facility shall submit a written summary report to the complainant
and recipient, if different than the complainant, within 10 business days
after the executive director, hospital director, or director of the state
facility receives a copy of the investigative report under
section 778(5). The summary report shall include all of the following:

(a) Statement of the allegations.


(b) Statement of issues involved.


(c) Citations to relevant provisions of this act, rules, policies,
and guidelines.


(d) Summary of investigative findings.


(e) Conclusions.


(f) Recommendations made by the office.


(g) Action taken, or plan of action proposed, by the respondent.


(h) A statement describing the complainant's right to appeal and
the grounds for an appeal.

(2) Information in the summary report shall be provided within the
constraints of sections 748 and 750 and shall not violate the rights of
any employee.

330.1784 Summary report; appeal.

Sec. 784.

(1) Not later than 45 days after receipt of the summary
report under section 782, the complainant may file a written appeal with
the appeals committee with jurisdiction over the office of recipient
rights that issued the summary report.

(2) An appeal under subsection (1) shall be based on 1 of the following
grounds:

(a) The investigative findings of the office are not consistent with
the facts or with law, rules, policies, or guidelines.


(b) The action taken or plan of action proposed by the respondent
does not provide an adequate remedy.


(c) An investigation was not initiated or completed on a timely
basis.

(3) The office shall advise the complainant that there are advocacy
organizations available to assist the complainant in preparing the
written appeal and shall offer to refer the complainant to those
organizations. In the absence of assistance from an advocacy
organization, the office shall assist the complainant in meeting the
procedural requirements of a written appeal. The office shall also inform
the complainant of the option of mediation under section 786.

(4) Within 5 business days after receipt of the written appeal, members
of the appeals committee shall review the appeal to determine whether it
meets the criteria set forth in subsection (2). If the appeal is denied
because the criteria in subsection (2) were not met, the complainant
shall be notified in writing. If the appeal is accepted, written notice
shall be provided to the complainant and a copy of the appeal shall be
provided to the respondent and the responsible mental health agency.

(5) Within 30 days after receipt of a written appeal, the appeals
committee shall meet and review the facts as stated in all complaint
investigation documents and shall do 1 of the following:

(a) Uphold the investigative findings of the office and the action
taken or plan of action proposed by the respondent.


(b) Return the investigation to the office and request that it be
reopened or reinvestigated.


(c) Uphold the investigative findings of the office but recommend
that the respondent take additional or different action to remedy
the violation.


(d) If the responsible mental health agency is a community mental
health services program or a licensed hospital, recommend that the board
of the community mental health services program or the governing board of
the licensed hospital request an external investigation by the state
office of recipient rights.


(6) The appeals committee shall document its decision in writing.
Within 10 working days after reaching its decision, it shall provide
copies of the decision to the respondent, appellant, recipient if
different than the appellant, the recipient's guardian if a guardian has
been appointed, the responsible mental health agency, and the office.

330.1786 Notice of decision; appeal.

Sec. 786.

(1) Within 45 days after receiving written notice of the
decision of an appeals committee under section 784(5), the appellant may
file a written appeal with the department. The appeal shall be based on
the record established in the previous appeal, and on the allegation that
the investigative findings of the local office of recipient rights are
not consistent with the facts or with law, rules, policies, or
guidelines.

(2) Upon receipt of an appeal under subsection (1), the department
shall give written notice of receipt of the appeal to the appellant,
respondent, local office of recipient rights holding the record of the
complaint, and the responsible mental health agency. The respondent,
local office of recipient rights holding the record of the complaint, and
the responsible mental health agency shall ensure that the department has
access to all necessary documentation and other evidence cited in the
complaint.

(3) The department shall review the record based on the allegation
described in subsection (1). The department shall not consider additional
evidence or information that was not available during the appeal under
section 784, although the department may return the matter to the board
or the governing body of the licensed hospital requesting an additional
investigation.

(4) Within 30 days after receiving the appeal, the department shall
review the appeal and do 1 of the following:

(a) Affirm the decision of the appeals committee.

(b) Return the matter to the board or the governing body of the
licensed hospital with instruction for additional investigation and
consideration.

(5) The department shall provide copies of its action to the
respondent, appellant, recipient if different than the appellant, the
recipient's guardian if a guardian has been appointed, the board of the
community mental health services program or the governing body of the
licensed hospital, and the local office of recipient rights holding the
record.

330.1788 Mediation.

Sec. 788.

(1) At any time after the office completes the investigative
report, the parties may agree to mediate the dispute. A mediator shall be
jointly selected to facilitate a mutually acceptable settlement between
the parties. The mediator shall be an individual who has received
training in mediation and who is not involved in any manner with the
dispute or with the provision of services to the recipient.

(2) If the parties agree to mediation and reach agreement through the
mediation process, the mediator shall prepare a report summarizing the
agreement, which shall be signed by the parties. The signed agreement
shall be binding on both parties. Notice that an agreement has been
reached shall be sent to the office.

(3) If the parties fail to reach agreement through the mediation
process, the mediator shall document that fact in writing and provide a
copy of the documentation to both parties and the office within 10 days
after the end of the mediation process.

(4) If the parties engage in mediation, all appeal and response times
required under this chapter are suspended during the period of time the
mediation process is taking place. The suspension of time periods begins
on the day the parties agree to mediate and expires 5 days after the day
the mediator provides the written documentation to the parties and the
office that mediation was not successful.

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