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Rights, wrongs, and the dilemma of coerced community treatment
Systems and Psychosocial Advances Research Center Publications and Presentations
  • Jeffrey L. Geller, University of Massachusetts Medical School
UMMS Affiliation
Department of Psychiatry
Publication Date
Document Type
Adult; Aftercare; Ambulatory Care; Coercion; Commitment of Mentally Ill; Community Mental Health Services; Ethics, Medical; Female; Forensic Psychiatry; Humans; Male; *Mandatory Programs; Mental Disorders; *Mentally Ill Persons; Middle Aged; Paternalism; Patient Advocacy; Patient Rights; Personal Autonomy; Psychiatry
An outpatient treatment approach directed to patients with histories of psychotically based dangerousness, poor compliance, and recidivism is described. Cases are presented that suggest favorable outcomes of this approach, but the coercive nature of the treatment raises questions about the psychiatrist's violation of patients' rights and transgression of ethical standards. If psychiatrists are to successfully treat the most difficult chronic patients, can we do it without legally sanctioned, benevolent, coercive treatments? One model of such treatment is outpatient commitment. There is concern that without sound outpatient commitment statutes, we may witness the reemergence of asylums.
Am J Psychiatry. 1986 Oct;143(10):1259-64.
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Citation Information
Jeffrey L. Geller. "Rights, wrongs, and the dilemma of coerced community treatment" Vol. 143 Iss. 10 (1986) ISSN: 0002-953X (Linking)
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