California Health-Care Provider Refusal Clauses
This law was last updated on Nov 28, 2016
California Health Care Decisions Law allows health-care providers and health-care institutions refuse to comply with individual health-care instructions or decisions based on conscience.
California Probate Code sections 4619 defines health-care institution to mean “an institution, facility, or agency licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized or permitted by law to provide health-care in the ordinary course of business.”
California Probate Code section 4621 defines health-care provider to mean “an individual licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized or permitted by the law of this state to provide health-care in the ordinary course of business or practice of a profession.”
California Probate Code sections 4734–4736 permits a health-care provider to decline to comply with an individual health-care instruction or health care decision for reasons of conscience.
The clauses, enacted in 1999, allow health-care institutions to decline to comply with an individual health-care instruction or health care decision if the instruction or decision is contrary to a policy of the institution that is expressly based on reasons of conscience and if the patient was notified in a timely manner.
Health-care providers or institutions that refuse to comply must do the following:
- Promptly inform the patient, and any person authorized to make their health care decisions;
- Immediately make all reasonable efforts to assist in the transfer of the patient to another health care provider or institution that is willing to comply with the instruction or decision, unless the patient refuses; and
- Provide continuing care to the patient until a transfer can be accomplished or until it appears that a transfer cannot be accomplished.