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SPRINGFIELD – Family members would be able to receive certain information regarding their relatives in mental health facilities under legislation led by State Senator Laura Fine (D-Glenview), which passed the Senate Thursday.

“Individuals receiving care from mental health facilities may not be in a state where they are able to share information with loved ones,” Senator Fine said. “This initiative would ensure relatives involved in or paying for the individual’s care are allowed to receive pertinent information regarding their condition and treatment.” 

Senator Fine’s Access to Basic Mental Health Information Act would give certain family members access to information about their loved one’s care, including whether the individual is located at the mental health facility, their current physical and mental condition, diagnosis, treatment needs, services provided, services and medication needed, discharge planning or continuity of care, and a physician’s report if clinically appropriate. 

The parent, adult sibling, adult child, spouse or adult grandchild of the individual in care would be able to request information from the mental health facility if they are involved in or paying for the individual’s care.

“This act would put the interest and well-being of the individual seeking treatment first. Keeping family members involved and informed at every step of the treatment process leads to more positive outcomes down the line,” Senator Fine said. “Mental health care does not end when an individual walks out of a facility, and well-informed families can help individuals continue their care at home.” 

Senate Bill 1970 passed the Senate and now goes to the House of Representatives.