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Compulsory mental health care in Norway: the treatment criterion



Compulsory mental health care in Norway: the treatment criterion



International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 37(2): 168-173



The Norwegian government has chosen to retain a treatment criterion in the Mental Health Care Act despite the opposition of several user organizations. From a critical user perspective, the only reason for using coercion to require mental health treatment is that the individuals are in a state where they are an immediate danger to themselves and/or their surroundings. This articles aims, first, to provide an overview of research studies concerning the benefits or harmfulness of involuntary treatment after coerced admission and, second, to evaluate studies that try to compare involuntary with voluntary treatment. A systematic overview of studies of compulsory mental health care with regard to treatment criteria, coercion in mental health, and involuntary admission published over the last decade was examined in detail, along with a secondary manual search of references cited in identified publications. Few studies have been conducted on the effect of compulsory mental health care, and the results have been contradictory. More randomized studies are needed to document the kinds of effects that the use of compulsory treatment has on treatment results. Another issue that needs further examination is whether the use of coercion should be transferred to legal bodies with an adjudicatory process.

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Accession: 052272632

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 24268447

DOI: 10.1016/j.ijlp.2013.11.001


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