Texas Senate Backs Bill Concerning Psychotropic Drugs and Foster Kids

Texas Senate Backs Bill Concerning Psychotropic Drugs and Foster Kids

Lawmakers in both the Senate and the House support a bill that would require the guardians of all foster children to take caution before allowing them to take psychotropic drugs. The Senate says that the informed consent measure could become very helpful and beneficial to children in the foster care system. The Senate slightly revised the bill which already passed the house and has now been sent off to Governor Rick Perry.

The Senate edited the bill and removed a requirement that a guardian would need to submit a form to the state health department to prove that informed consent was given for a psychotropic medication. The new version of the bill also allows nurses and physicians assistants to perform follow-up medical examinations on children taking psychotropic drugs when necessary.

The new law was created after legislators became concerned about the welfare of foster children that have mental disabilities or emotional and psychotic disorders. The new laws will make sure that foster parents do no turn to strong medication as the first option for their foster children. Instead, the new legislation will make sure that foster parents know medicating their child is not the only option and should not be the first option considered.

The bill, labeled as HB 915, would require that a foster child is prescribed psychotropic drugs only after the guardian receives written or verbal information from a child's medical provider that talks about the child's mental health condition. As well, the documentation needs to list the benefits and potential side effects of the medication and needs to list other alternatives to the medication.

The bill also requires that foster parents take their children to follow-up medical visits at least every 90 days so that the doctors can monitor the effects of the strong medication on the child. If you are a foster parent, it is important that you keep these laws in mind when you are making medical choices for the children living in your home. Talk to Plano family lawyer if you want more information about psychotropic drug regulations and how they can affect your foster-parent relationship.