Involuntary Treatment Standards
Before a person can be delivered to an emergency receiving facility for an examination or evaluation by appropriate medical professionals as to any need for involuntary treatment, in the opinion of the court, a doctor issuing a certificate, or a law enforcement officer under appropriate circumstances, the observed facts must indicate that the patient meets one of the following definitions of inpatient or outpatient.
Formerly, the facts on which police action, a doctor's certificate, or a court order was based had to meet the standards for inpatient treatment as defined by the code. Essentially, these demand a finding that the person is a danger either to himself or others. A change in the law, i.e., in the definitions of "involuntary treatment" and "mentally ill person requiring involuntary treatment," allows a doctor's certificate, police delivery, or a Probate Court emergency order to apprehend to be based on the person's meeting involuntary inpatient treatment or outpatient treatment. See section 37-3-1 (9.3) and 37-3-1 (12) of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) for more information.
Definitions per OCGA:
- [37-3-1 (9.3)] "Involuntary treatment" means inpatient or outpatient treatment which a patient is required to obtain pursuant to this chapter. [37-3-1 (12)] "Mentally ill person requiring involuntary treatment" means a person who is an inpatient or an outpatient.
- [37-7-1 (14.3)] "Involuntary treatment" means inpatient or outpatient treatment which a patient is required to obtain pursuant to this chapter. [37-7-1 (3)] "Alcoholic, drug dependent individual, or drug abuser requiring involuntary treatment" means a person who is an inpatient or an outpatient.