SSSB 184: "An Act relating to mental health patient rights and to a hospital's duty to provide same sex staff for providing care to a mental health patient."
00 SPONSOR SUBSTITUTE FOR SENATE BILL NO. 184 01 "An Act relating to mental health patient rights and to a hospital's duty to provide same 02 sex staff for providing care to a mental health patient." 03 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 * Section 1. AS 18.20 is amended by adding a new section to read: 05 Sec. 18.20.095. Mental health patient's right to same sex staff. (a) A patient 06 18 years of age or older who is receiving mental health treatment and being provided 07 intimate care at a hospital shall have a right to have care provided by a staff member 08 who is the same sex as the patient. 09 (b) A supervisor or manager employed by a hospital shall 10 (1) post a notice of the right provided under (a) of this section in a 11 conspicuous place; and 12 (2) if, after reasonable and good faith efforts to comply, the hospital is 13 unable to comply with the requirement under (a) of this section, document in the 14 patient record that intimate care was provided by a staff member of the sex opposite to
01 the patient. 02 (c) Staff members employed by a hospital shall 03 (1) provide privacy for each patient, especially for patients who are the 04 opposite sex and when patient care involves intimate bodily functions, unavoidable 05 intimate touching, or nudity; 06 (2) except when with another staff member of the opposite sex, avoid 07 entering patient care areas for a person of the opposite sex and areas specified for 08 persons of the opposite sex; 09 (3) only conduct routine safety checks and rounds of bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, and shower areas of a patient who is the same sex as the staff member; and 11 (4) when entering a patient care area of a patient of the opposite sex or 12 an area specified for a person of the opposite sex, announce the staff member's 13 presence from the doorway and conduct business from the doorway whenever 14 feasible. 15 (d) In this section, 16 (1) "intimate care" means hygienic care, including bathing, dressing, 17 changing, and toileting, that involves a patient's perineal area and, for a female patient, 18 the patient's breasts; "intimate care" does not include activities done in preparation for 19 medical procedures; 20 (2) "mental health treatment" means admission to a hospital primarily 21 for electroconvulsive treatment or treatment with psychotropic medication, or 22 admission to and retention in a health care institution for other mental health 23 treatment; 24 (3) "staff member" means a person employed by a hospital to provide 25 direct patient care.