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APA's Model Law: A Commitment Code by and for Psychiatrists
David B. Wexler
Psychiatric Services 1985; doi:
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The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona 85721

1985 American Psychiatric Association

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The author argues that the APA model law is seriously flawed because it lacks sufficient mechanisms for questioning the judgment ment of psycbiatrists throughout the commitment process and for ensuring the best disposition of patients. By failing to provide f or independent screening of commitment petitions, to mandate multiple psychiatric evaluations of respondents, to provide mdigent respondents a free psychiatric examination to help them prepare for the commitment hearing, and to address the shortcomings of legal advocacy, the model law sets the stagefor improper or unwarranted commitments. In addition, the law circumvents the rights of patients admitted on emergency status to refuse treatment throughout the entire evaluation period, which can last up to 14 days.

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