San Diego County Adopts Laura’s Law Mental Health Program
On Tuesday, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt Laura's Law, which allows involuntary treatment of individuals with severe mental health issues, U-T San Diego reports.
The measure passed in a 3-1 vote, with one absent board member.
According to U-T San Diego, the San Diego County director of purchasing and contracting now is responsible for issuing a request for bids from organizations that could provide care to patients under the law.
The contract would:
- Be worth $2.29 million in its first year; and
- Last for one year, with an option to extend it for four additional years.
The contract process is expected to be complete by the end of the year, with the first referral expected in spring 2016.
The program is expected to provide care to about 114 county residents in the first year.
To receive care, the San Diego County In-Home Outreach Team must determine whether individuals meet nine qualifications, including:
- Being unlikely to survive without supervision;
- Having a condition that is "substantially deteriorating"; and
- Having a history of not cooperating with treatment.
County Supervisor Dianne Jacob said, "San Diego County has taken critical steps over the years to help people with serious mental" health issues. She added, "It was clear that we really, really needed to do more."
Meanwhile, Dimitrios Alexiou -- president and CEO of the Hospital Association of San Diego and Imperial counties -- said, "We don't view this as the be-all, end-all, but [as] another tool in the toolbox" to address mental health care (Stewart, U-T San Diego, 4/21).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.