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Columns   |    
Law & Psychiatry: The Evolution of Laws Regulating Psychiatric Commitment in France
Raphaël Gourevitch, M.D., Ph.D.; Clara Brichant-Petitjean, M.D.; Marc-Antoine Crocq, M.D.; François Petitjean, M.D.
Psychiatric Services 2013; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201300174
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Dr. Gourevitch is affiliated with Centre Hospitalier Sainte-Anne, Service Hospitalo Universitaire, 1, rue Cabanis, F-75014 Paris, France (e-mail: r.gourevitch@ch-sainte-anne.fr). He is also with the Faculté de Médecine, Université Paris Descartes, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Paris. Dr. Brichant-Petitjean is with Espace Murger, Centre de Soins d'Accompagnement et de Prévention en Addictologie, Hôpital Fernand Widal, Paris. Dr. Crocq is with Centre Hospitalier, Rouffach, France. Dr. Petitjean is with Centre Hospitalier Spécialisé Interdépartemental, Ainay le Château, France. This paper was presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association, Philadelphia, May 5–9, 2012. Paul S. Appelbaum, M.D., is editor of this column.

Copyright © 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association

Abstract

This column reviews the evolution of French laws governing psychiatric commitment, culminating in the July 2011 Act, which was opposed by most professional organizations. The 2011 Act has maintained the two traditional French approaches to involuntary treatment: at the request of a third person and upon a decision by a prefect representing the government. However, the 2011 Act introduced major innovations into French practices: systematic review by a judge, a 72-hour observation period, and the possibility of compulsory community treatment.

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References

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