|Title||Consent and capacity in Ontario’s civil mental health system|
This thesis is about capacity, consent and autonomy in the civil mental health systemï¼› it argues for short-term treatment with psychiatric medication without consent for hospitalized inpatients who lack capacity and do not have a prior capable wish. The purpose of short-term treatment without consent is to restore capacity so that the person can make autonomous decisions, as effective treatment may alleviate symptoms of mental illness, reduce suffering and distress, aid with suicide prevention, reduce the risk of relapse and decrease the length of institutionalization. Based on the theory of supported autonomy, the thesis proposes legislative changes to authorize treatment with psychiatric medication for an approximate period of fourteen to sixty days. The short-term intervention is to be used alongside existing legal safeguards such as mandatory rights advice and advance directives.
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