Should patients that have been identified by doctors as being of potential harm to themselves or others be “made” to take medication? If so, how would you see this being enforced?
On the one hand, we have a right to privacy and over what goes in and comes out of our body. However, there are situations where laws are enforced in regards to the safety of others and to you, yourself. DUI’s are an example of this. A Dr.’s oath to report if one of their patients is planning to kill themselves or others is another. If it has been determined that someone is a danger to themselves and others, should they be made to take their medication?
We have a close friend who had schizophrenia. A brilliant, gentle guy who, at 22 started hearing voices. He was able to work for two decades with this since he was a software engineer and could work behind closed doors. He tried medication but always felt like he was walking in glue and couldn’t think at all. He kept trying. He moved in with us when he had nowhere to go that he trusted. He lived with us for two years and you could rarely tell that he had “it”. Then, 9 months ago, after attempting to control the disease without medication, he committed suicide in our little apartment we built for him next to our house. My husband and I found him. God rest Alex. I do know this, talk therapy is so important to the process and his insurance did not allow him to see the one therapist that he trusted. Instead he had to take a bus two hours away to an approved provider. Alex didn’t trust him and stopped going. It’s so rare for someone with schizophrenia to get violent and kill.
Rather than schizophrenia, it is sociopaths and psychopaths that kill, and there are many warning signs years before the person acts out their plans.
So, what do you think? Should severely mentally ill people be made to take medication?