Advocates

Texas – Treatment Advocacy Center

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TAC

Getting your loved one help in Texas: In a psychiatric emergency, the more you know about your state’s laws and treatment options, the better prepared you will be to respond in the most effective way possible. These resources will help:

Estimated Prevalence of Severe Mental Illness in Texas (2015)

  • Total adult population: 20.1 million
  • Individuals with schizophrenia: ~ 221,000
  • Individuals with severe bipolar disorder: ~ 442,000

(SOURCE: NIMH and US BUREAU OF THE CENSUS, 2015)

Mandatory Treatment Laws in Texas

Like every state, Texas has civil commitment laws that establish criteria for determining when involuntary treatment is appropriate for individuals with severe mental illness who cannot seek care voluntarily. Texas’s laws allow for the use of court-ordered treatment in the community, known as assisted outpatient treatment (AOT).

For “temporary” (90-day) inpatient commitment, a person must be mentally ill and EITHER:

For “temporary” (90-day) outpatient commitment, a person must be ALL of the following:

QUALITY OF TEXAS LAWS
Emergency Evaluation  D Find relevant statute here
Outpatient Commitment  A Find relevant statute here
Inpatient Commitment  C- Find relevant statute here

(SOURCE: MENTAL HEALTH COMMITMENT LAWS: A SURVEY OF THE STATES, Treatment Advocacy Center, 2014)

Public Psychiatric Beds in Texas

A minimum of 50 beds per 100,000 people is considered necessary to provide minimally adequate treatment for individuals with severe mental illness. Like every state, Texas fails to meet this minimum standard.

Beds in 2010 Beds in 2005 Beds lost or gained % of beds lost or gained Beds per 100,000 people % of target beds needed State ranking in beds per capita
2,129 2,128 1 0% 8.5 19% 41

(SOURCE: NO ROOM AT THE INN: TRENDS AND CONSEQUENCES OF CLOSING PUBLIC PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITALS, Treatment Advocacy Center, 2012)

Criminalization of Mental Illness in Texas

Like every state in the nation, Texas incarcerates more individuals with severe mental illness than it hospitalizes.

Total inmate population 2005 Estimated population of SMI inmates Total psychiatric inpatient population 2004 Likelihood of incarceration vs. hospitalization
223,195 35,711 4,579 7.8 to 1

(SOURCE: MORE MENTALLY ILL PERSONS ARE IN JAILS AND PRISONS THAN HOSPITALS: A Survey of the States, Treatment Advocacy Center, 2010)

Criminal Diversion in Texas

Criminal justice officials are responding to the criminalization of individuals with innovative programs designed to divert individuals with severe mental illness away from the criminal justice system. Two of the most promising programs are: mental health courts and crisis intervention training (CIT).

Percentage of population served by a mental health court Percentage of population served by CIT Combined average Grade
44% 27% 36% C

(SOURCE: PREVALENCE OF MENTAL HEALTH DIVERSION PRACTICES: A SURVEY OF THE STATES, Treatment Advocacy Center, 2013)

Policy Recommendations

 

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