By Haywood S.B. No. 208
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
1-1 AN ACT
1-2 relating to the disclosure of certain information regarding certain
1-3 patients of a physician.
1-4 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
1-5 SECTION 1. Section 576.005, Health and Safety Code, is
1-6 amended by amending Subsections (c) and (d) and adding Subsections
1-7 (e)-(g) to read as follows:
1-8 (c) Except as provided by Subsection (d), a [
1-9 under Subsection (b) may not be made if the patient gives contrary
1-10 written instructions to the treating physician.
1-11 (d) Without regard to the patient's written instructions, a
1-12 physician may disclose under Subsection (b) information
1-13 identifying the patient or information about the patient's location
1-14 to the patient's:
1-15 (1) parent, if the patient is a minor; or
1-16 (2) guardian of the person, if the patient is a minor
1-17 or is incapacitated.
1-18 (e) If the treating physician has reason to believe that
1-19 disclosure to a legally authorized representative under this
1-20 section would be harmful to the patient's physical, mental, or
1-21 emotional health, the physician may disclose to the legally
1-22 authorized representative only whether the requested records exist
1-23 and whether the patient is in the facility. The treating physician
1-24 shall inform the representative of the physician's belief that the
2-1 release of additional information would be harmful to the patient.
2-2 If the physician denies further disclosure under this subsection,
2-3 the physician shall:
2-4 (1) report to the Department of Protective and
2-5 Regulatory Services the representative's request for information;
2-7 (2) request that the department obtain a protective
2-8 order on the patient's behalf.
2-9 (f) If a hearing on the motion for a protective order is
2-10 held, the court shall:
2-11 (1) determine what information may be disclosed and
2-12 what information shall remain confidential; and
2-13 (2) issue any appropriate orders.
2-14 (g) For the purposes of this section "legally authorized
2-15 representative" means:
2-16 (1) a parent or legal guardian if the patient is a
2-17 minor, or a legal guardian if the patient has been adjudicated
2-18 incapacitated [ incompetent] to manage the patient's personal
2-20 (2) an agent of the patient authorized under a durable
2-21 power of attorney for health care;
2-22 (3) an attorney ad litem appointed for the patient;
2-24 (4) a parent, spouse, adult child, or personal
2-25 representative if the patient is deceased.
2-26 SECTION 2. The importance of this legislation and the
2-27 crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
3-1 emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
3-2 constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
3-3 days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,
3-4 and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its
3-5 passage, and it is so enacted.