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Page 11 winter issue of empowerment magazine

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  • 1. We Advocate For You! Sacramento County Office of Patients’ RightsYou may have heard of the Sacra- These are involuntary detainments that Questions asked could include:mento County Office of Patients’ mental health patients can be placedRights (SAC OPR) in some conver- on because the doctor feels that they Have you want to or tried to hurtsation or from a friend. You might could benefit from more inpatient treat- yourself or someone else?have used our services to help with a ment after a 5150 (72 hours) hold is Have you been taking your pre-hospitalization hearing or other issue. up. scribed medications?It is also possible that you’ve never Have you been sleeping and eating?heard of the SAC OPR. If that’s the The 5250 is a 14 day hold. The 5270 is How has your hygiene been?case, or you are unclear about what a 30 day hold. There are only three Have you been attending groups onwe do and the services we offer, keep reasons that a person could be put on the unit?reading and it will become clear. a 14 day hold (5250). The person hasIt is a part of Consumers Self-Help to be an active danger to others, dan- In short, they will want to know whatand is contracted with Sacramento ger to themselves or gravely disabled has changed for you since you firstand Yolo Counties to provide advo- due to a mental disorder. Grave dis- came to the hospital. All of this infor-cacy services to mental health clients. ability legally means not being able mation along with the doctors, nurses,The advocates perform four primary to care for one’s basic needs such and social workers notes in your chartservices. as food, clothing or shelter. will help the hearing officer decided whether or not to release you from the 1. They represent patients’ A person might have access to these hold. During the hearing, your advo- “expressed” wishes at Certification items but is unable to use them to take cate remains with you and shares the Review Hearings for patients invol- care of themselves. This condition is information you provided when he/she untarily held at psychiatric hospitals. the only one that can be used for a 30 interviewed you. 2. They investigate com- day hold (5270). Patients have a legal plaints/concerns about inpatient and right to have a hearing within the first If you are kept on the hold and remain outpatient mental health treatment. four days of either hold being written. at the hospital, your advocate can ar- 3. They monitor psychiatric and resi- The hearing officer determines if there range a writ hearing for you. This is the dential facilities for state law compli- is probable cause or good reason for second hearing you are legally entitled ance. the hold to continue. Your advocate’s to and is an appeal of the first hearing. roll in the hearing process: The public defender then has about 2- 4. They provide trainings of Pa- 3 business days to come and discuss tients’ Rights to staff and consum- Should you find yourself in a hospital, your case with you. Shortly after that, ers of mental health services. on a hold, you will receive a copy of the second hearing is held with aIf you’re like most people, you’re the 5250 or the 5270 hold you have judge, the public defender and your-probably wondering what, if anything, been placed on. Hospital staff may self. The advocates do not attendall that has to do with you. The an- also tell you what day your hearing is those hearings.swer is surprising simple. Everything! scheduled for. Each hearing takesAdvocates can teach staff how pa- about 15 to 20 minutes. These are Meet Your Advocates:tients have a right to be treated. They held in a conference or meeting roomcan observe and report to Community at the hospital > Karen – likes cats and enjoys play-Care Licensing how well a board and ing the violincare facility is being run. Helping peo- Your advocate will meet with you prior > George – likes birds and astronomyple solve problems with providers by to the hearing and discuss if you want > Marsha – a social worker with aproviding information and resources to stay for more treatment or attempt to great sense of humorabout their rights is another way advo- be discharged through the hearingcates make sure that consumers are > Lisa – mother of two grown sons process. If you want to stay and con- with Bi Polar Disordertreated fairly. tinue to work with your doctor, you > Rae – a therapist in training who en- need to do nothing else. You would joys helping peopleHospital Holds not be contesting the hold. > Angelina – enjoys volunteering andThe service that advocates spend the science fictionmost time on takes place in psychiat- If you want to leave against the doc-ric hospitals when patients are at their tor’s advice, you would contest the Feel free to call us if you need helpmost vulnerable. hold and discuss with your advocate with a problem you may have in the why you feel you are ready to leave. mental health system. 916-333-3800 inAdvocates protect the rights of and Sacramento County 877-965-6772 in Commonly, the advocate will want torepresent the wishes of the patient Yolo County know how you have been doing overwho has been placed on a 5250 or a5270 hold. the past three days in the hospital. www.consumersselfhelp.org

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