Hey starlet (freakshownia) wrote in ed_ucate,
Hey starlet

Forced recovery/hospitalization

The article this is from is about vaccinations against childhood diseases, however I think this excerpt can apply to eating disorders as well:

"Patient choices that seem to be irrational or contrary to their interests must generally be respected provided that patients are competent and have been appropriately informed of, and have understood, any possible adverse consequences of their decisions."

Of course one could make the argument that due to having an eating disorder (and therefore suffering from a mental illness), the patient is not sufficiently competent to make decisions concerning their care (or lack thereof). However, the knowledge that one is simply not ready to recover does not mean that the dangers of the illness are not understood. If the patient is at a stage in the disorder such that if treatment is not received death would be imminent, than it would be irresponsible for any doctor or caretaker to not provide treatment, by whatever means necessary, even if that includes forced hospitalization. However, if the risk is not so great, the patient should have a right to choose what, if any, treatment they receive.

What are your opinions? Ignore the issue of minors and parental consent - while I believe that in theory this argument should apply to minors as well, for the sake of simplicity I would like to leave that out since so much more is involved concerning childhood development, the rights of the parents, etc.
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