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When is it illegal, for a patient to sign themselves out of a hospital?

i heard, even if they have yet to be treated, a patient can sign themselves out of a hospital.when in the eyes of the law, is it illegal to sign yourself out? or is it, no matter what the situation is, a patient can sign themselves out?

A patient has the right to refuse medical care at anytime.


If they feel you are a danger to yourself or others, or they think they need more time to observe you to determine that (24-72hr hold).


That's when they put you on a locked ward or in a room with a guard outside and just don't let you leave. So I don't know if it's "illegal to sign youself out" cuz they don't even let you go. AMA - or Against Medical Advice isn't illegal, it's just against doctors advice and not in you best interest and it's basical a liability thing to cover the doctor/hospitals behind if anything were to happen to you.


It is never illegal to sign yourself out of a hospital. It is your right to refuse care. But, if you sign yourself out AMA (against medical advice), your doctors will often refuse to provide the prescriptions you need and your insurance can deny medical care. It's really not a smart thing to do. In most cases I've seen, people who go AMA usually have mental illness, are addicts of some sort who cannot tolerate the abstinence the hospital enforces or families who insist on taking a family member home whom they cannot safely care for. In all those cases, they usually end up back in the hospital within a short time, or they die.


You can sign yourself out. It might not be the best thing for yourself and the staff might advise against it but they can not make you stay.


In Canada as long as you are an adult...the only time you can be forced to stay is when you are unconscious....its called implied consent


The only time it would be illegal is if you are under arrest or have police involved. Other than that, you can sign yourself out.


Even then, you may refuse "treatment."


It is illegal if there is a court order to keep a patient in the Psych ward. My cousin was committed by the dr. and the courts until they got his medicine for dementia and hallucinations under control. Only then could he go home. In other words, if a person is a danger to themselves or others, the courts can intervene and keep the patient in the hospital.


Unless you have been declared insane or are in there because someone has reported that you are a threat to yourself or others, holding you against your will is false imprisonment. You can always leave a hospital at any time. You don't even have to sign anything....just walk out. If they try to stop you, they can be charged with false imprisonment.

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