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San Diego County supervisors back state plan for court-ordered psychiatric care



San Diego County on Tuesday backed a proposal by Gov. Gavin Newsom to develop court-ordered treatment plans for people with schizophrenia or other psychotic illnesses.

The state plan, called CARE Court, was introduced to the California Senate in February as the Community Assistance, Recovery, and Empowerment Act, SB 1338. It would authorize courts to create plans for behavioral health care for people with psychotic disorders who lack medical decision-making capacity.

β€œIt is clear when we look at the situation that we face on the street with the unsheltered that we have to have more tools in our toolbox of things we can try to do to meet their needs,” board Chair Nathan Fletcher said at the hearing. β€œI deeply respect and appreciate individuals rights and freedoms and we want to be mindful of that, but it is not humane in anyway to allow people to live in the condition that we see them in.”

The plans would include psychiatric medication, housing and other services for those patients, according to the legislation. It aims to intervene early to provide mental health services before patients are subject to law enforcement action.

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