Tex. Health & Safety Code Section 164.007
Qualified Mental Health Referral Service: Definition and Standards


A qualified mental health referral service means a service that conforms to all of the following standards:


the referral service does not exclude as a participant in the referral service an individual who meets the qualifications for participation and qualifications for participation cannot be based in whole or in part on an individual’s or entity’s affiliation or nonaffiliation with other participants in the referral service;


a payment the participant makes to the referral service is assessed equally against and collected equally from all participants, and is only based on the cost of operating the referral service and not on the volume or value of any referrals to or business otherwise generated by the participants of the referral service;


the referral service imposes no requirements on the manner in which the participant provides services to a referred person, except that the referral service may require that the participant charge the person referred at the same rate as it charges other persons not referred by the referral service, or that these services be furnished free of charge or at a reduced charge;


a referral made to a mental health professional or chemical dependency treatment facility is made only in accordance with Subdivision (1) and the referral service does not make referrals to mental health facilities other than facilities maintained or operated by the department, community mental health centers, or other political subdivisions, provided that a physician may make a referral directly to any mental health facility;


the referral service is staffed by appropriately licensed and trained mental health professionals and a person who makes assessments for the need for treatment of mental illness or chemical dependency is a mental health professional as defined by this chapter;


in response to each inquiry or after personal assessment, the referral service makes referrals, on a clinically appropriate, rotational basis, to at least three mental health professionals or chemical dependency treatment facilities whose practice addresses or facilities are located in the county of residence of the person seeking the referral or assessment, but if there are not three providers in the inquirer’s county of residence, the referral service may include additional providers from other counties nearest the inquirer’s county of residence;


no information that identifies the person seeking a referral, such as name, address, or telephone number, is used, maintained, distributed, or provided for a purpose other than making the requested referral or for administrative functions necessary to operating the referral service;


the referral service makes the following disclosures to each person seeking a referral:


the manner in which the referral service selects the group of providers participating in the referral service;


whether the provider participant has paid a fee to the referral service;


the manner in which the referral service selects a particular provider from its list of provider participants to which to make a referral;


the nature of the relationship or any affiliation between the referral service and the group of provider participants to whom it could make a referral; and


the nature of any restriction that would exclude a provider from continuing as a provider participant;


the referral service maintains each disclosure in a written record certifying that the disclosure has been made and the record certifying that the disclosure has been made is signed by either the person seeking a referral or by the person making the disclosure on behalf of the referral service; and


if the referral service refers callers to a 1-900 telephone number or another telephone number that requires the payment of a toll or fee payable to or collected by the referral service, the referral service discloses the per minute charge.


A qualified mental health referral service may not limit participation by a person for a reason other than:


failure to have a current, valid license without limitation to practice in this state;


failure to maintain professional liability insurance while participating in the service;


a decision by a peer review committee that the person has failed to meet prescribed standards or has not acted in a professional or ethical manner;


termination of the contract between the participant and the qualified mental health referral service by either party under the terms of the contract; or


significant dissatisfaction of consumers that is documented and verifiable.
Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 705, Sec. 2.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.
Amended by:
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1 (S.B. 219), Sec. 3.0496, eff. April 2, 2015.

Source: Section 164.007 — Qualified Mental Health Referral Service: Definition and Standards, https://statutes.­capitol.­texas.­gov/Docs/HS/htm/HS.­164.­htm#164.­007 (accessed Nov. 25, 2023).

Nov. 25, 2023

§ 164.007’s source at texas​.gov