Parent-Initiated Treatment: Stakeholder Advisory Group


The parent-initiated treatment process (authorized by chapter 71.34 RCW.25) addresses parental participation in in their children’s mental health treatment decisions along with parental control of minor children during treatment. Mental health care providers are required to protect the rights of minors while also assuring that minors’ parents are given the opportunity to participate in treatment decisions for their children.

This stakeholder advisory group was formed by the Department of Social and Health Services (see Section 9 of House Bill 2779) to review the parent-initiated treatment process and to provide important recommendations about how this process is implemented. This advisory group will develop compassionate and informed recommendations on five topics:

  • Age of consent
    Providing specific recommendations around the age of consent for the behavioral health treatment of a minor.
  • Parental involvement in youth treatment decisions
    Identifying options for parents to be included in decision making around their child’s treatment decisions.
  • Information communicated to families and providers
    Understanding information that must be communicated to both families and providers about the parent-initiated treatment process.
  • The definition of medical necessity for emergency mental health services
    Making recommendations to define medical necessity for emergency mental health services, while also identifying options available for parental involvement in those determinations.
  • Services for commercially sexually exploited children
    Reviewing the effectiveness of parent-initiated treatment, involuntary treatment, or other treatment services specifically for their ability to meet the needs of commercially sexually exploited children.

By December 1, 2018, the department of social and health services must report the findings and recommendations of the advisory group to the children's mental health work group.

Meeting Materials

To learn more about the advisory groups activities and to follow this important conversation, review notes from previous stakeholder advisory group meetings below.


May 21, 2018

April 24, 2018

Contact us

For more information contact Diana Cockrell at 

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