“Lawmakers in several states are advancing proposals to force individuals who abuse opioids into treatment via involuntary commitment statutes as a means of coping with the rapid rise in overdose rates. Some experts say that the proposals, while commendable, so far are not perfect.
Bills have been offered in New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and the state of Washington. The simplest proposal — Senate Bill 220-FN, in New Hampshire — would modify state involuntary commitment laws to change the definition of mental illness to include “ingestion of opioid substances.”
Andrew J. Saxon, MD, professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Washington, in Seattle, told Medscape Medical News that adding substance use disorder to the mental illness statute is “a positive step in most ways,” because experts in the field already view such disorders as a mental illness.”
Read more at: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/877839
Source: Medscape.com – March 28, 2017