- A psychiatric advance directive (PAD) is a legal document that documents a person’s preferences for future mental health treatment, and allows appointment of a health proxy to interpret those preferences during a crisis.
- PADs may be drafted when a person is well enough to consider preferences for future mental health treatment.
- PADs are used when a person becomes unable to make decisions during a mental health crisis.
You may appoint an agent, known in Connecticut as a “Health Care Representative”, to make decisions about your treatment if you become incompetent to make decisions. You may also write instructions about your health care, including your mental health care. A helpful guide, produced by the Office of the Attorney General of Connecticut, is available here. This guide contains model forms, although the statute does not require a particular form of words. To specify mental health instructions, it is recommended that you use the model forms, attaching extra sheets where necessary. Individual forms can be found here.
Although Connecticut does not currently have a specific statute for a psychiatric advance directive, you can learn more about general advance directives for health care in Connecticut at the Caring Connections website.