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The case for involuntary hospitalization of the mentally ill
Am J Psychiatry 1976;133:496-501.
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Abstract

The author examines three points of view on the question of society's right to involuntarily hospitalize a mentally ill individual. The "abolitionists" oppose involuntary hospitalization entirely; the medical model psychiatrists support the need for commitment under certain circumstances and so do the civil liberties lawyers, but by different standards. The author believes that with the current overreliance on the dangerousness standard, we are witnessing a pendular swing in which the rights of the mentally ill to be treated and protected are being set aside in the rush to give them their freedom. He favors a return to the use of medical criteria by psychiatrists, albeit with constructive legal safeguards.

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