CA Welf & Inst Code Section 5600.2

To the extent resources are available, public mental health services in this state should be provided to priority target populations in systems of care that are client-centered, culturally competent, and fully accountable, and which include the following factors:


Client-Centered Approach. All services and programs designed for persons with mental disabilities should be client centered, in recognition of varying individual goals, diverse needs, concerns, strengths, motivations, and disabilities. Persons with mental disabilities:


Retain all the rights, privileges, opportunities, and responsibilities of other citizens unless specifically limited by federal or state law or regulations.


Are the central and deciding figure, except where specifically limited by law, in all planning for treatment and rehabilitation based on their individual needs. Planning should also include family members and friends as a source of information and support.


Shall be viewed as total persons and members of families and communities. Mental health services should assist clients in returning to the most constructive and satisfying lifestyles of their own definition and choice.


Should receive treatment and rehabilitation in the most appropriate and least restrictive environment, preferably in their own communities.


Should have an identifiable person or team responsible for their support and treatment.


Shall have available a mental health advocate to ensure their rights as mental health consumers pursuant to Section 5521.


Priority Target Populations. Persons with serious mental illnesses have severe, disabling conditions that require treatment, giving them a high priority for receiving available services.


Systems of Care. The mental health system should develop coordinated, integrated, and effective services organized in systems of care to meet the unique needs of children and youth with serious emotional disturbances, and adults, older adults, and special populations with serious mental illnesses. These systems of care should operate in conjunction with an interagency network of other services necessary for individual clients.


Outreach. Mental health services should be accessible to all consumers on a 24-hour basis in times of crisis. Assertive outreach should make mental health services available to homeless and hard-to-reach individuals with mental disabilities.


Multiple Disabilities. Mental health services should address the special needs of children and youth, adults, and older adults with dual and multiple disabilities.


Quality of Service. Qualified individuals trained in the client-centered approach should provide effective services based on measurable outcomes and deliver those services in environments conducive to clients’ well-being.


Cultural Competence. All services and programs at all levels should have the capacity to provide services sensitive to the target populations’ cultural diversity. Systems of care should:


Acknowledge and incorporate the importance of culture, the assessment of cross-cultural relations, vigilance towards dynamics resulting from cultural differences, the expansion of cultural knowledge, and the adaptation of services to meet culturally unique needs.


Recognize that culture implies an integrated pattern of human behavior, including language, thoughts, beliefs, communications, actions, customs, values, and other institutions of racial, ethnic, religious, or social groups.


Promote congruent behaviors, attitudes, and policies enabling the system, agencies, and mental health professionals to function effectively in cross-cultural institutions and communities.


Community Support. Systems of care should incorporate the concept of community support for individuals with mental disabilities and reduce the need for more intensive treatment services through measurable client outcomes.


Self-Help. The mental health system should promote the development and use of self-help groups by individuals with serious mental illnesses so that these groups will be available in all areas of the state.


Outcome Measures. State and local mental health systems of care should be developed based on client-centered goals and evaluated by measurable client outcomes.


Administration. Both state and local departments of mental health should manage programs in an efficient, timely, and cost-effective manner.


Research. The mental health system should encourage basic research into the nature and causes of mental illnesses and cooperate with research centers in efforts leading to improved treatment methods, service delivery, and quality of life for mental health clients.


Education on Mental Illness. Consumer and family advocates for mental health should be encouraged and assisted in informing the public about the nature of mental illness from their viewpoint and about the needs of consumers and families. Mental health professional organizations should be encouraged to disseminate the most recent research findings in the treatment and prevention of mental illness.
Last Updated

Aug. 19, 2023

§ 5600.2’s source at ca​.gov