Copyright 2003 American Psychiatric Association
The tables in this section are from Simon RI: Concise Guide to Psychiatry and Law for Clinicians, 3rd ed. Washington, DC, American Psychiatric Publishing, 2001. Copyright 2001 American Psychiatric Publishing, Inc.
Thoroughly discuss treatment termination with patient.
Indicate the following in a letter of termination:
Fact of discussion of termination
Reason for termination
Availability for emergencies only until date of termination
Willingness to provide names of other appropriate therapists
Willingness to provide medical records to subsequent therapist
A statement of the need for additional treatment, if appropriate
Allow the patient reasonable time to find another therapist (length of time depends on availability of other therapists).
Provide the patient’s records to the new therapist upon proper authorization by the patient.
If the patient requires further treatment, provide the names of other psychiatrists or refer the patient to a local or state psychiatric society for further assistance.
If the need for further treatment is recommended, a statement about the potential consequences of not obtaining further treatment should be provided.
Send the termination letter certified or restricted registered mail, return receipt requested.
Diagnosis: description of the condition or problem
Treatment: nature and purpose of proposed treatment
Consequences: risks and benefits of the proposed treatment
Alternatives: viable alternatives to the proposed treatment, including risks and benefits
Prognosis: projected outcome with and without treatment
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