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J Am Acad Psychiatry Law. 2010;38(1):27-31.

Commentary: the mental status examination in the age of the internet--challenges and opportunities.

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3300 East First Avenue, Suite 590, Denver, CO 80206, USA.


In her Presidential address, Dr. Recupero shows us how the Internet and changes in electronic communications have affected the forensic evaluation process in multiple ways. These developments provide the forensic psychiatrist with new tools and new sources of information, and their novelty brings about new challenges and opportunities. This commentary focuses on the use of information and communication technology (ICT) for purposes of obtaining collateral information in addition to a sample of other likely uses of ICT in the practice of forensic psychiatry. Collateral information from electronic communications such as e-mails, web postings, texting, and social networking sites provides useful data but also raises challenges in interpretation. Digital information about the expert can be used by cross-examining attorneys. Electronic tools can help the forensic psychiatrist to be more efficient. Correctional systems have a great deal to gain by adopting more efficient information systems. Continuing evolution of these technologies assures that we can expect more rapid change in these areas in the future.

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