HARRISBURG - The House has passed House Bill 1895, introduced by Rep. David Rowe (R-Snyder/Union), which is aimed at protecting the rights of Pennsylvanians receiving mental health care by declaring that persons in treatment have a right to be free from abuse, neglect and exploitation.
“I am incredibly pleased that my bill to protect the rights of Pennsylvanians receiving mental health care, especially during this unprecedented and stressful time, has moved forward in the legislative process,” said Rowe. “The National Bureau of Economic Research has released data pointing to a direct correlation between rising unemployment and a spike in mental health issues resulting in increased drug abuse and suicide rates. With over 1 million Pennsylvanians now unemployed, we will undoubtedly have more people seeking help, and I am proud that the House saw the importance of my bill in protecting patient rights during this time.”
House Bill 1895
amends Section 113 of the Mental Health Procedures Act, essentially adding a Bill of Rights for those being treated for a mental illness.
Patient advocacy groups have noted that a current legal loophole causes victims of abuse great difficulty in holding their perpetrators accountable. The bill was part of the House Republican Caucus legislative package of victim protection bills for the 2019-20 session. It now heads to the Senate.
Representative David Rowe
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Alison Haas