Rights of Recipients of Mental Health Services; Introduction

The 110th Maine Legislature enacted into law, 34 M.R.S.A. section 2004, now 34-B M.R.S.A. section 3003, entitled "An Act Authorizing and Directing the Bureau of Mental Health to Enhance and Protect the Rights of Recipients of Mental Health Services, "that directed the Bureau to promulgate rules, under the Administrative Procedures Act, in a number of areas of patient/client rights.

The intent of the Legislature was to provide a process whereby the Division of Mental Health, as the lead administrative agency for institutional and community mental health services, would develop comprehensive rules in this complex area, taking into account clinical, social and administrative factors while promoting and safeguarding the rights of people receiving mental health services.

These rules apply to all agencies licensed by the Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation and all public or private inpatient psychiatric institutes and units, including the state operated mental health institutions.

These rules were developed by a task force made up of consumers, providers, regulators, professionals, family members, advocates and others, with the input of citizens throughout the State.

These rules were initially promulgated on October 1, 1984, were amended October 1, 1986, October 1, 1989 and January 1, 1995.

Questions regarding the applicability or interpretation of these rules should be directed to the
Director, Division of Licensing, Department of Behavioral and Developmental Services, State House Station 40, State Office Building, Augusta, Maine 04333, Area Code (207) 287-4200 or 287-2000 (TTY).