Mental Illness, Patient Confidentiality and Gun Control: via HuffPost

Mental Illness, Patient Confidentiality and Gun Control: via HuffPost Certain disorders ought to be flagged whether or not a specific individual is deemed an unusual threat. An outpatient may go through a crisis without seeking help. Manic depression is one thing that should be automatically flagged. It isn’t appropriate that anybody with that diagnosis have a gun. The reporting requirement can and should be done in a manner that insulates the reporting professionals from liability. If you don’t have statutory reporting requirements a psychiatrist who is in a position where he may have an obligation to breach confidentiality is in a dilemma. Whatever course of action he takes may lead to a serious lawsuit and potential professional consequences if he guesses wrong. That’s unjust but that’s how it is. The requirement should be to err on the side of safety and you get immunity. The major disincentive to psych patients to seek help is that they may be taken by force to a “quiet room”, put in 5 point restraints and held down by goons while the patients are given nasty medications by force. Nobody in that situation is thinking about whether their guns are going to be taken away.

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