Joint Commission issues advisory on psychiatric advance directives

The Joint Commission issued a Quick Safety advisory on psychiatric advance directives (PADs) this week. According to the advisory, “PADs offer patients an opportunity to address issues specific to mental health care and treatment, such as medication preferences for psychiatric treatment, inpatient treatment considerations, conditions for seclusion and restraint, and selection of psychiatrists or treatment facilities.” The rate of PAD completion is low, the Joint Commission said, despite research suggesting roughly two-thirds of patients with serious mental illness would complete a PAD if provided with the option and the necessary assistance. (Joint Commission news release, 2/11/20)