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Relating to the rights and treatment of and services provided to certain adult sexual assault survivors.
No fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
HB 4531 would require a health care facility to presume that an adult sexual assault survivor requesting a forensic medical examination and treatment is competent. The facility would be required to provide a forensic medical examination and treatment to an adult sexual assault survivor for whom a guardian is appointed without the consent of the guardian if: (1) the facility determines the survivor understands the nature of the examination; and (2) the survivor agrees to receive the examination and treatment. If the survivor requests an examination and treatment, and the facility determines the survivor potentially is incapable of consenting, the facility may: (1) obtain consent from a relative or caretaker of the survivor; (2) obtain consent from the survivor's guardian; or (3) petition a court with probate jurisdiction in the county in which the facility is located for an emergency order authorizing the examination and treatment.
This bill also would prohibit a health care facility from contacting a survivor's relative, caretaker, guardian, guardian ad litem, or other legal agent if personnel of the facility know or have reason to believe that such a person is a suspect or accomplice in the sexual assault. It would also prohibit a facility from providing an examination to a survivor for whom a guardian is appointed if the survivor refuses an examination, regardless of whether the guardian requests or consents to the examination.
Additionally, this bill would expand the prohibition against the disclosure of a communication, record, or evidence that is confidential under the Sexual Assault Prevention and Crisis Services Act to a parent or legal guardian of a survivor who is a minor if an advocate or sexual assault program knows or has reason to believe the parent or legal guardian is a suspect in the sexual assault.
Texas Action remains neutral on HB 4531 because it does not affect our liberty principles.