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Mass Rep Mass Supreme Judic Court. 1983 Nov 29;390:489-513.

Rogers v. Commissioner of Department of Mental Health.



This decision is one of several made by various federal courts in a case that began 27 April 1975 as Rogers v. Okin. The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts ruled that a patient's involuntary commitment to a mental institution is not, in itself, a determination that the patient is not competent to make decisions concerning his or her treatment; rather, a judicial determination of incapacity to make treatment decisions must precede any attempt to override the patient's right to refuse antipsychotic drugs. For an institutionalized mental patient already adjudicated incompetent, a decision regarding treatment under "substituted judgment" principles must be made by a judge, not by medical personnel. The state's powers do permit involuntary administration of antipsychotic drugs without prior judicial approval in emergency circumstances.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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