Texas Health and Safety Code

Sec. § 611.004
Authorized Disclosure of Confidential Information Other Than in Judicial or Administrative Proceeding


A professional may disclose confidential information only:


to a governmental agency if the disclosure is required or authorized by law;


to medical or law enforcement personnel if the professional determines that there is a probability of imminent physical injury by the patient to the patient or others or there is a probability of immediate mental or emotional injury to the patient;


to qualified personnel for management audits, financial audits, program evaluations, or research, in accordance with Subsection (b);


to a person who has the written consent of the patient, or a parent if the patient is a minor, or a guardian if the patient has been adjudicated as incompetent to manage the patient’s personal affairs;


to the patient’s personal representative if the patient is deceased;


to individuals, corporations, or governmental agencies involved in paying or collecting fees for mental or emotional health services provided by a professional;


to other professionals and personnel under the professionals’ direction who participate in the diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of the patient;


in an official legislative inquiry relating to a state hospital or state school as provided by Subsection (c);


to designated persons or personnel of a correctional facility in which a person is detained if the disclosure is for the sole purpose of providing treatment and health care to the person in custody;


to an employee or agent of the professional who requires mental health care information to provide mental health care services or in complying with statutory, licensing, or accreditation requirements, if the professional has taken appropriate action to ensure that the employee or agent:


will not use or disclose the information for any other purposes; and


will take appropriate steps to protect the information; or


to satisfy a request for medical records of a deceased or incompetent person pursuant to Section 74.051 (Notice)(e), Civil Practice and Remedies Code.


Personnel who receive confidential information under Subsection (a)(3) may not directly or indirectly identify or otherwise disclose the identity of a patient in a report or in any other manner.


The exception in Subsection (a)(8) applies only to records created by the state hospital or state school or by the employees of the hospital or school. Information or records that identify a patient may be released only with the patient’s proper consent.


A person who receives information from confidential communications or records may not disclose the information except to the extent that disclosure is consistent with the authorized purposes for which the person first obtained the information. This subsection does not apply to a person listed in Subsection (a)(4) or (a)(5) who is acting on the patient’s behalf.
Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 856, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1264, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.
Amended by:
Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 138 (H.B. 741), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.

Last accessed
Jun. 7, 2021