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PAIMIProtection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness
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Under the DD and PAIMI Acts, VOPA has the authority to access "all records" of individuals whom it determines it has probable cause to believe may have been abused.
As then Judge Alito wrote in the Third Circuit decision, the protection and advocacy system is not seeking to discover reports or introduce them into evidence, but to fulfill its advocacy and investigative functions under the PAIMI Act.
34) The Virginia Office for Protection and Advocacy (VOPA), an independent state agency created under the PAIMI Act, sued three Virginia state officials in federal court, seeking injunctive relief to gain access to patient records pursuant to federal law.
39) Like Reinhard, the facts in Indiana Protection concerned an independent state agency suing state officials to enforce provisions of the PAIMI Act in federal court.
56) The court applied the Ex parte Young doctrine to enforce Indiana's compliance with the PAIMI Act's disclosure requirements.
Both PADD and PAIMI contain language generally authorizing the pursuit of legal remedies.
120) The court highlighted the fact that protected individuals had access to formal grievance procedures and that P&As are statutorily required under PAIMI to establish an advisory council composed of people who receive or have received mental health services and their family members, arguing that these facts made protected individuals substantially similar to "members" of the Commission in Hunt.
127) The court held that the complaint failed to allege harm to a protected individual under PAIMI, which requires a person either to be currently receiving treatment or to have been discharged within the past ninety days in order to be a "member" of the P&A who can allow the P&A to satisfy the first prong of the associational standing test.
OPA contends that a statutorily authorized investigation is not a civil action and thus there is no conflict between PAIMI and Connecticut law.
Mathis said that Congress worded PAIMI so specifically that it is impossible to doubt its intent.
Since the PAIMI program advocates only on behalf of those individuals who live in or who have recently been released from institutions (Westat, 1999), this PAIR program served the remaining individuals with mental illness who had established residences in the community.