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Office of Mental Health

Introduction

On August 9, 1999, Governor George Pataki signed Kendra's Law (Chapter 408 of the laws of 1999), creating a statutory framework for court-ordered Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT), to ensure that individuals with mental illness and a history of hospitalizations or violence participate in community-based services appropriate to their needs (Appendix 1 contains a copy of Kendra's Law); Appendix 2 contains an analysis of court decisions relating to Kendra's Law). The law became effective in November of 1999. Since that time, the New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) has been evaluating the impact of Kendra's Law and the resulting AOT program on local mental health systems and on individuals receiving court-ordered services. In this interim report, required by the Kendra's Law statute, we review the implementation and current status of AOT and present findings from OMH's ongoing evaluation of the program.

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