|Previous||1 of 2||Next|
small (250x250 max)
medium (500x500 max)
large ( > 500x500)
Louisiana's law by which persons are committed to state mental hospitals is one of the m o s t archaic and unenlightened in the nation. Mentally ill persons must be "convicted of insanity and sentenced to a hospital"—in the words of a New Orleans psychiatrist—before they can get the treatment they need. Often there is a tragic delay, as much as a month. The part of the state where the delay in commitment is longest, where the civil court judges string out the process to the utmost, is Orleans Parish. That is the observation of Dr. William Super, Charity Hospital psychlatrist, and Dr. Kenneth A. Ritter, chairman of the committee on legislation of the New Orleans Society of Psychiatry and Neurology. IS HER TREATMENT A MONTH TOO LATE? IRONICALLY, though Louisiana's mental commitment law is archaic, it is not very old. It has been in efect since 1952. For eight years before that Louisiana had a mental commitment law which the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry, a national body, considered a model. They called this state's law one of the four best in the nation. Louisiana psychiatrists want that law put back on the books. • They know they have stiff political opposition — all the harder to fight because they don't know the reasons for it. "There is so much resistance to changing the law that politics has got to be involved," Dr. Ritter said. "In exactly what way I don't know." State Rep. Wellborn Jack of Shreveport introduced the "archaic" law of 1952 which replaced the "ideal" law of 1944. Dr. Nicholas J. Chetta, Orleans Parish coroner, who also strongly favors a return to the 1H44 commitment law, recalls the introduction of the Jack bill. "As far as I know, he did , . . . it entirely on his own, worked it up strictly in his own mind," Dr. Chetta says. "It came as a surprise."
|Title||Louisiana's New Mental Commitment Law: Doctors Call It 'Archaic'|
|Contact Information||John P Isché Library - LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans - 433 Bolivar St. New Orleans, LA 70112 ~ Send inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org|
Ritter, Kenneth A., Dr.
Super, William, Dr.
|Call Number||1957 p112-113|
New Orleans Item
|Identifier||See 'reference url' on the navigational bars.|
|Source||John P Isché Library - LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans ~ www.lsuhsc.edu/no/library|
|Rights||Use is restricted to IP address of LSUHSC - New Orleans|