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HAVEN and health care professionals

Contributed by Richard R. Brown

HAVEN is a confidential program in Connecticut (East Berlin 860-828-3175) that was set up under Connecticut Law (See Connecticut General Statute § 19a-12a) to assist and support health care professionals, such as doctors, nurses, social workers and many other licensed individuals who are suffering from physical and/or mental illness, emotional disorder or chemical dependency such as alcohol or drug abuse. It presents an opportunity for those individuals with such issues to deal with these conditions in a non-public fashion as an alternative to the possible public manner in which such an individual would be treated, if the matter were handled by the Connecticut Department of Public Health, DPH.

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Many individuals find themselves dealing with HAVEN because some other health care provider or hospital, as mandatory reporters, informed HAVEN or even DPH of a provider's alleged mental health or physical issues. It presents an opportunity to seek treatment while sometimes being permitted to continue practicing under the watchful eye of HAVEN.

People are also referred to HAVEN by friends, relatives and co-workers. Anyone can make a referral by going to HAVEN's site on the internet and then making a call. People in the HAVEN program, which can last for up to five years, need to understand that for those individuals who become noncompliant with the HAVEN program under Connecticut law may have their respective matters referred to DPH for further action; it may go from a private matter to a public matter, where anyone would be able to find any remedial action imposed published on DPH's website.

If you have been referred to HAVEN you may want to seek the assistance of an experienced attorney in guiding you through the process. The use of an attorney is not mandatory in making important decisions and understanding one's rights and the process, itself, but a lawyer can help facilitate an appropriate result.

For more information, please contact Brown Paindiris & Scott.

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