One year ago, the Georgia General Assembly enacted the Psychiatric Advance
Directive (PAD) Act in 2022, but experts say the very community that it’s designed to help is largely
unaware that it exists.
A PAD empowers citizens to make informed decisions to plan for future mental health
needs and care, such as expressing one’s preferences for care providers and
medication and to appoint a legal proxy to interpret those wishes in a crisis.
“PADs are similar to medical advance directives that have been used for years,” says
licensed psychologist Dr. Julie Battle, Brenau University’s Fuller E. Callaway
“It is incumbent upon mental health, medical, and legal professionals to learn about
PADs so that we can help our community and those who might benefit from PADs take
the necessary steps to create their own psychiatric advance directive and so that we can
respond appropriately when presented with a PAD.”
To help local mental health professionals and community partners create strong PADs,
the Brenau University Lynn J. Darby School of Psychology and Adolescent Counseling,
Probate Judge Patty Laine and the Hall County Solicitor’s Office, have come together to
host the workshop “Understanding PAD” on September 15 from 1 – 4 p.m. at the
Renaissance Building in Gainesville.
Seating is limited, so attendees are required to reserve their seat by September 13.
Registration: https://tinyurl.com/understandingpadworkshop .
(Photo illustration provided by the National Alliance on Mental Illness)
Read the full Psychiatric Advance Directive Act