Reconceptualizing involuntary outpatient psychiatric treatment: From "Capacity" to "Capability"

Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 23 (1):33-45 (2016)
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Justifying involuntary psychiatric treatment on the basis of a judgment that a person lacks capacity is usually expressed in terms of a person’s ability to make a decision about his or her health and treatment. Typically, this relates to the ability to refuse treatment. Exactly what “capacity” means, however, and how one determines when another individual lacks capacity, or lacks sufficient capacity, in this context is particularly controversial, with the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities insisting that involuntary treatment be abandoned altogether and capacity tests avoided.Capacity is a concept that has multiple meanings and applications across different disciplines and...



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