Provides the community guardian program shall obtain annually a statement prepared by a physician, psychologist, nurse clinician, social worker, or other person, evaluating the condition and current functional level of the person for whom the community guardian program serves as guardian.
Ayes (57): Adams, Addabbo, Alesi, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Espaillat, Farley, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Gallivan, Gianaris, Golden, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Huntley, Johnson, Kennedy, Klein, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Martins, Maziarz, McDonald, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Mara, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Saland, Sampson, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousin, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Nays (2): Duane, Krueger
Excused (2): Hassell-Thomps, Oppenheimer
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the social services law, in relation to the community guardianship program
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: At present, subparagraph (g) of paragraph 3 of section 473-d of the Social Services Law requires that community guardian programs obtain assessments of their clients by two mental health professionals each year. These assessments are intended to be used to determine whether the guardianship continues to be necessary.
Section one of this bill would eliminate this requirement and instead require a report by a doctor or psychologist or other person who has evaluated the client in the three months prior to the filing of the report regarding the client's condition and current functional level. This report is already required by paragraph 5 of subdivision (b) of section 81.31 of the Mental Hygiene Law.
JUSTIFICATION: Current Social Services Law requires that clients of a community guardian program be assessed yearly by two mental health professionals. These assessments help determine whether continued guardianship is needed. This requirement is no longer necessary in light of provisions of the Mental Hygiene Law. In particular, section 81.31 of the Mental Hygiene law requires that every guardian file an annual report with the court covering range of issues. One component of the report is a statement by a physician, psychologist, nurse clinician or social worker or other person who has recently evaluated the client regarding the client's condition and his or her function level. Since an evaluation of each client must now be conducted, it is redundant to require that two mental health professionals must also assess the client. During these difficult fiscal times, New York City strains to safeguard vital services while implement cost saving measures. Funds spent by localities on contracts for these assessments could be used elsewhere, rather than supporting duplicative and unnecessary evaluations.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the state.
LOCAL FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Savings to localities utilizing the community guardian program.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5493--A 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 25, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. GALLIVAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Aging -- recommitted to the Committee on Aging in accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the social services law, in relation to the community guardianship program THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph (g) of subdivision 3 of section 473-d of the social services law, as added by chapter 846 of the laws of 1986 and such section as renumbered by chapter 395 of the laws of 1995, is amended to read as follows: (g) the community guardian program shall obtain
[annual assessments from two qualified psychiatrists or one qualified psychiatrist and one qualified psychologist who are independent of the community guardian program of persons for whom it serves as committee or conservator to determine whether continuation of the guardianship is necessary, and the appointing court shall be informed of the results of such assessments and may discharge the community guardian program as conservator or committee pursuant to sections 77.35 and 78.27 of the mental hygiene law]ANNUALLY A STATEMENT PREPARED BY A PHYSICIAN, PSYCHOLOGIST, NURSE CLINICIAN, OR SOCIAL WORKER, OR OTHER PERSON EVALUATING THE CONDITION AND FUNCTIONAL LEVEL OF A PERSON FOR WHOM THE COMMUNITY GUARDIAN PROGRAM SERVES AS GUARDIAN PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH FIVE OF SUBDIVISION (B) OF SECTION 81.31 OF THE MENTAL HYGIENE LAW; S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD11291-03-1