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Involuntary Medical Treatment in the Correctional Setting  

Author:  Lawrence  Mendel, DO, FSCP, CCHP.; Terry  Cipoletti, JD.

Source: Volume 14, Number 05, July/August 2013 , pp.65-69(5)

Correctional Health Care Report

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Although refusal of medical care is a common issue in the correctional setting, the justification for forced treatment is relatively rare. In general, adult inmates and detainees retain the right to refuse medical treatment, but that refusal is predicated on their ability to comprehend the reason for the treatment and the consequences of refusal. When inmates and detainees lack the ability to comprehend the nature or consequences of refusal, other measures may be warranted, especially if the consequence of refusal poses a threat to life or limb.

Keywords: Cruzan v. Director, Missouri Dep’t of Health; renal disease; sick sinus syndrome; adenocarcinoma

Affiliations:  1: correctional physician; 2: Kennedy Childs, PC.

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