BApK

Bundesverband der Angehörigen psychisch erkrankter Menschen e.V.

Coercive measures

The BApK takes the view that coercive measures of any kind, above all

  • detention,
  • pharmaceutical, surgical and other treatment,
  • restraint, 
  • isolation

may in any case only be used if these measures are

  • unavoidable and reasonable and
  • carried out on a legal basis.

All possibilities to avoid such measures must have been exhausted in advance.

In the conflicting area between the patient’s right to self-determination (“right to illness”) and the right to treatment there will however be situations where coercive measures are unavoidable.

For the relatives of mentally ill persons, having to watch or even instigate coercive measures is a dramatic and sometimes also traumatic experience.

That’s why relatives have been discussing this issue for a long time. We have summarised some of their considerations below.

In addition you will find here a compilation of the changes in custodianship provisions introduced by the German parliament in January 2013 as regards the implementation of treatment measures without the consent or against the will of the patient.

·       Involuntary treatment – Aspects from the viewpoint of relatives

·       How can self-determination and the need for assistance be improved?

·       Involuntary treatment in the course of forensic psychiatric detention

·       Fundamentalism doesn’t help. Without a willingness to use coercion psychiatry too is inhuman.

In the debate about the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities the issue of involuntary measures also plays a significant role. [more on the UN-CRPD]

 

Involuntary treatment – Aspects from the viewpoint of relatives

(Nov 2012) In the course of a training event by the Academy of Public Health Services in Hamburg on the subject of involuntary treatment in the light of recent well-known judgments, the chairman of our regional association for Hamburg, Dr. Hans Jochim Meyer, took the opportunity to present aspects from the viewpoint of relatives.

Summary:

1. The recent judgments must be taken as an incentive to improve psychiatric care. It would be very sad if an attempt was simply made to adapt current laws to the status quo and left everything as it is now.

2. Both in an outpatient and hospital setting we need structures and conditions which render superfluous the need for involuntary measures of any kind as far as possible.

3. In the outpatient setting we need early, proactive treatment and better crisis intervention.

4. Coercive measures of any kind may only be used as a last resort under carefully defined conditions.

5. In the discussion now underway, the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities must be taken into consideration.

6. Affected persons and relatives should be involved in the discussion.

 [ more ]

 

How can self-determination and need for assistance be improved?

Gudrun Schliebener
at a meeting of the parliamentary party "Bündnis 90 Die Grünen" (Nov 2011)

[ more ]

 

Involuntary treatment in the course of forensic psychiatric detention

Dr. Gerwald Meesmann
on the content and consequences of two decisions of the Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfG) on Law on forensic psychiatric detention of the Federal State of Rhineland-Palatinate (March 2011) and the Law on compulsory hospitalisation of the Federal State of Baden-Wuerttemberg (October 2011)

The judgments will also have an effect on general psychiatry and are directly related to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

[ more ]

 

Fundamentalism doesn’t help. Without a willingness to use coercion psychiatry too is inhuman.

by Prof. Dr. Reinhard Peukert (April 2010)

[ more ]