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Letters   |    
Should We Try to Avoid Civil Commitments?: In Reply
Tanya Nicole Wanchek, Ph.D., J.D.; Richard J. Bonnie, LL.B.
Psychiatric Services 2012; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.20120p947a
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Copyright © 2012 by the American Psychiatric Association.

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In Reply: We agree with Dr. Hubbeling's observations, particularly the importance of recognizing that patients' agreement to remain in the hospital voluntarily before or during a commitment hearing does not necessarily indicate that they feel less coerced. However, it is also important to emphasize that, in our view, the main finding of the study is that longer TDO periods were associated with an increased rate of dismissals at the subsequent commitment hearings. We presume that in most of these cases the evaluating clinicians and the judges determined that the patients had become sufficiently stabilized to be discharged safely to outpatient settings for voluntary treatment.

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