Patients’ Rights Office

The Patients’ Rights Office was created in response to California legislation requiring each county mental health director to appoint patients’ rights advocates to protect and further the Constitutional and statutory rights of mental health care recipients.

Please contact the Patients’ Rights Office at (800) 700-9996 or (213) 738-4888 if you have any questions or need more information.

What the Patients’ Rights Office Does:

Represents Consumers at Inpatient Psychiatric Hospitals – Patients’ Rights Advocates travel to psychiatric hospitals throughout Los Angeles County and represent patients who are involuntarily detained. The Advocate prepares consumers for their certification review hearings. The hearings are held to determine if the treatment facility has sufficient cause to hold the patient without his/her consent. Advocates also represent consumers at medication capacity hearings (Riese hearings). These hearings are held to determine whether or not an involuntarily treated patient has the ability to consent to or refuse psychiatric medication.

Responds to Inpatient and Outpatient Psychiatric Grievances and Complaints – Patients’ Rights Advocates investigate and respond to grievances and complaints about inpatient and outpatient mental health providers. The complaints can come from consumers, family, friends, and even staff. Advocates also provide other advocacy and mediation services to consumers involving outpatient providers.

Provides Residential Advocacy – Patients’ Rights Advocates, along with the State of California Community Care Licensing and the Ombudsman, investigate complaints about licensed board and cares and unlicensed residential facilities where consumers live. They also provide training on residential law and rights to consumers, family and providers.

Advocates for Minor’s Rights – Patients’ Rights Advocates specialize in minor’s rights and parental rights/responsibilities. They investigate complaints regarding minors, monitor facilities providing services to minors to ensure compliance with laws and regulations and represent minor’s at hearings.

Responds to Long-Term Placement (IMD) Consumer Concerns – Patients’ Rights Advocates work directly with consumers living in IMDs, providers, families, and interested parties. Provides Training & Consultation – Patients’ Rights Advocates provide training and educational presentations on patients’ rights and mental health law to consumers, providers and interested parties.

Locates Missing Persons – Assists families and friends to find missing mental health consumers without violating consumer’s privacy or HIPAA regulations.

Provides Medi-Cal Beneficiary Publications and Forms – Distributes information explaining Medi-Cal mental health services and grievance forms in the threshold languages.

The Patients’ Rights Office Mental Health Client Resource Directory – provides an overview of resources in the Los Angeles area including but not limited to mental health, medical, legal, self help, and housing. It was developed as a tool to be used for self empowerment and advocacy. Feel free to download it and to distribute it to anyone who can benefit from the information it contains.

Consumer Resource Directory

Accessing Materials
Below is the “Mental Health Plan Beneficiary Handbook” in PDF file format (Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view and print.) The Guide is also available in additional languages and formats (refer to page 7 of the handbook for details). They can be obtained by contacting the Patients’ Rights Office (800) 700-9996 or (213) 738-4888.

Mental Health Plan Beneficiary Handbooks (Updated December 2023)

Grievance and Appeal Forms and Procedures

Notices of Action

Last updated: 1/12/24