Monday, July 02, 2007

Psychiatrists acknowledge forcible medication problem

The Association of Psychiatrists of Macedonia acknowledged on Wednesday the problem linked to forcible hospitalization of patients in mental institutions.

The statement, released Wednesday by the Association of Psychiatrists, came after the case unearthed by Macedonia's Helsinki Committee of Human Rights. Namely, a Skopje resident was unlawfully held in mental hospital Bardovci for 35 days. He was detained by police and transferred to mental institution without court order.

"The Association of Psychiatrists of Macedonia notifies the public that it initiated a co-operation with courts to find a modality to overcome the problem of forcible hospitalization and to put the valid legislature in practice," the Association said.

The association adds that "as regards the above mentioned case, there was a full compliance with the professional and ethical aspect of psychiatric treatment of the patient and safety of the environment, which are priorities speaking from ethical-medical aspect.

In its monthly report, the Helsinki Committee argues the legality of the procedure to deprive a person from freedom and to put him in mental hospital with no prior consent. In accordance with the current law on out-court procedure, a medical institution must notify the court about the hospitalization of a patient in period of 48 hours. The court is to decide whether the hospitalization will continue or be terminated.

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