Monday, June 7, 2010

A psychiatrist/lawyer crossfire

Henry A. Nasrallah, MD


Do lawyers understand psychiatry? To answer that semi-rhetorical question, I imagined the following conversation between 2 friends, Barry the barrister and Harry the psychiatrist.

Barry: Harry, I think psychiatry is a politically incorrect discipline.

Harry: How so, my dear friend?

Barry: Well, psychiatrists hospitalize people against their will, strip them of their civil liberties, and force them to take powerful, mind-altering drugs.

Harry: Barry, when you think about it objectively, involuntary hospitalization is a compassionate and legal act for people suffering from a brain disease that makes them suicidal or homicidal and a danger to themselves and others with no insight that they are sick. Once treated and improved, patients regain their civil liberties and often thank us for providing care against their will. And a person needs a healthy brain to properly exercise one’s civil liberties.

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