Member Rights & Responsibilities Know Your Rights!

As Members of Community Behavioral Health you have rights and responsibilities. They are listed below and we invite you to call us if you need help understanding your rights and responsibilities.

  • Receive Information: Each Member has the right to receive information about CBH, our policies and procedures, our services, our practitioners and providers, and your rights and responsibilities.
  • Dignity and Privacy: Each Member is guaranteed the right to be treated with respect and consideration for his or her dignity, right to privacy, and right to confidentiality.
  • Receive Information on Available Treatment Options: Each Member is guaranteed the right to receive information on medically necessary available treatment options presented in a manner appropriate to the Member’s condition and ability to understand, and regardless of cost or benefit coverage.
  • Participate in Decisions: Each Member is guaranteed the right to participate in decisions regarding his or her behavioral health care, including the right to refuse treatment. You can be a part of your treatment team by asking questions and getting answers before and during your treatment and involving family members and other important people in your treatment.
  • Refuse Treatment: Each Member (as part of making decisions regarding their care) can refuse treatment. You have the right, under these circumstances, to get an explanation of what may happen if you don’t get treatment.
  • Voice Complaints or Grievances: Each Member has the right to voice complaints about CBH or the care from a provider. Each Member has the right to file a grievance if you are unhappy about any decision made by us. See Complaints and Grievances on page_____.
  • Make Recommendations: Each Member has the right to make recommendations regarding CBH’s Members rights and responsibilities policies. (Set-up email account)
  • Free from Restraint or Seclusion: Each Member is guaranteed the right to be free of any restraint or seclusion used as a means of force, discipline, convenience or retaliation.
  • Copy of Medical Records: Each Member is guaranteed the right to request and receive a copy of his or her medical records maintained at CBH, and to request they be amended or corrected. See Notice of Privacy Practices for more information.
  • Free Exercise of Rights: Each Member is free to exercise his or her rights, and that the exercise of those rights does not adversely affect the way the Member is treated by CBH and the provider.
  • Second Opinion: All CBH Members have a right to request a second opinion. Members can request a second opinion from a qualified behavioral health care professional within CBH’s network. CBH Member Services will provide options for a second opinion from an appropriate behavioral health care professional.
  • Confidentiality: We know that your privacy is important to you. It is very important to us too. CBH wants you to know that we respect your privacy and work to protect it. CBH staff obeys all laws about confidentiality.

Confidentiality: Agreeing not to reveal or share information (about you or your care)

Know that:

  • Your records are only viewed by CBH staff who are involved with your care or your family’s care.
  • Our providers follow the same State and Federal laws as we do.

In general, we do not give out any information about your treatment to outside parties without your written approval. We will use or share only the minimum amount of your medical information needed to do our job. We may use your information:

  • When necessary to arrange your treatment and coordinate care with providers or your Medicaid physical health plan
  • To help resolve a complaint you have about your care
  • When necessary to pay for your care
  • When necessary to conduct the basic health care operations of CBH (including quality or treatment reviews)
  • When it is required by your county, the oversight organization, or state to monitor the activities of CBH
  • If you or someone else could get hurt. The laws says that we must share information in order to get you or another person out of danger
  • When you provide your written permission

You can talk to the CBH Privacy Officer about how we respect your privacy. See page _____ for our Notice of Privacy Practices.

Children’s Rights

In January 2005, Act 147 amended the Minor’s Consent to Treatment Act in regard to the age of consent for inpatient and outpatient mental health treatment for juveniles between the ages 14-18.

This is very important to know when discussing the rights of children and their parents when mental health services are being sought. The chart below will help you understand the basics of this Act. CBH feels that parents and guardians should know about their child’s care if possible. We work to make sure you and your children get the help you need by following these State guidelines:

If your child is Then he or she
Under 14 years of age Must have parent or legal guardian’s permission to get mental health care
14 years of age or older Can get mental health help without a parent or legal guardian’s permission
Any age Can get help for alcohol or drug problems without a parent or legal guardian’s permission

 

Family’s Rights

As a parent or a guardian of a child receiving services through CBH, you have certain rights:

  1. You have the right to be treated with dignity and respect as the parent or guardian of a child receiving services.
  2. You have the right to take part in setting up your child’s treatment plans, and to make sure the plan is being followed.
  3. You have the right to bring any advocate (person who can help explain your wishes) to treatment planning meetings about your child.
  4. You have the right to be sure that your child’s records are kept private.
  5. If your child is under 14 years old and getting mental health services, you have the right to look at your child’s records.
  6. You have the right to refuse to have your child follow the treatment plan if you think it is not a good idea. You also have the right to know the risks to your child of not following the plan.
  7. You have the right to complain, if you are unhappy with the services your child is using.
  8. You have the right to change your child’s counselor.
  9. You have the right to know the qualifications and job description of any person who is involved with your child’s care.
  10. You have the right to “Notice and Appeal.” This means that, if a service is denied, you must get a letter that tells you so. AND, you have the right to appeal (ask for another review of) that decision (see pp. 30 to 52).

Know Your Responsibilities!

CBH and all of its providers expect to be treated fairly, with the same dignity and respect you would want for yourself. As a CBH Member, your responsibilities are to:

  • Provide as much information as you can about why you are seeking help and answer questions as honestly and completely as you are able.
  • To understand your health problems and participate in developing mutually agreed-upon treatment goals, to the degree possible
  • Follow through with the plan of care that you and your provider have agreed on. Be part of the treatment team by telling your provider or therapist about symptoms and to ask questions.
  • Keep your County Assistance Office, provider and CBH aware of any changes to your information (address, phone number, etc). This is very important and will help us provide the best care for you.
  • Tell your provider when you don’t understand the treatment plan and/or to tell your provider or therapist if you do not agree with recommendations.
  • Report fraud if/when you are aware of it. (See page X Reporting Fraud & Abuse)

Advance Directives

Mental Health Advance Directives help you plan for your future mental health care in case you become too sick to make your own decisions. You can do this with a Mental Health Declaration or by choosing a Mental Health Power of Attorney or both.

A Mental Health Declaration is a written statement. It tells your provider the following:

  • what kind of treatment you wish to have
  • where you would like to have your treatment take place
  • specific directions you have about your mental health care treatment

A Mental Health Power of Attorney lets you name a person to make mental health care decisions for you if you are too sick to make your own decisions. Your Mental Health Power of Attorney will make decisions about your mental health care, based on your written instructions.

Both the Mental Health Declaration and the Mental Health Power of Attorney must be in writing. Just saying what you want is not enough.

If you would like to set up a Mental Health Declaration or a Mental Health Power of Attorney or both, please contact the Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania at 1-866-5783659 or 1-717-346-0549, or email them at info@mhapa.org. They will send you the forms and answer any questions. It is important that you share your written Mental Health Advance Directives with your mental health care provider. If you do not share your Mental Health Advance Directives with your provider, he/she will not be able to follow them.

If you or your representative have any complaints about Mental Health Advance Directives or don’t like the way your provider is handling your Mental Health Advance Directives, you can make a complaint by following the regular complaint process in the CBH Member Handbook. (Please see the “Complaint” section, pages 31-37.)

A note about your rights…

You have the right to confidentiality…

Your right to confidentiality means that information about you is kept private.

Things that you share about yourself while getting Mental Health or Substance Use treatment cannot be shared without your written “okay.”

When information needs to be shared, no more information may be shared with others than is necessary.

In certain cases, such as situations that involve threats to others or self, information may need to be shared without your written okay. In these cases, only information that is absolutely necessary will be shared with others.

When information needs to be shared about a child under 14, the parent or guardian must give permission (sign a release form).