Vt governor wants to ease involuntary medicationThe Associated Press | September 04,2013BRATTLEBORO — Gov. Peter Shumlin plans to ask the Legislature to change the state’s mental health laws to make it easier for doctors to administer drugs to state hospital patients who are refusing treatment.
Shumlin said the Brattleboro Retreat psychiatric hospital, which is facing a loss of federal funding, is confronting many of the issues that caused the Vermont State Hospital to lose federal dollars. He said some of those issues stem from the state’s involuntary medication law.
“We have a challenge in Vermont, and that is that we are the most lenient state in the country when it comes to giving patients the ability to refuse or reject pharmaceutical treatment when it is medically warranted,” Shumlin told the Brattleboro Reformer.
“We have to come up with a system that gives our providers more latitude when it comes to acutely ill patients who desperately need pharmaceuticals as a part of the treatment,” he said. “I believe in patients having, whenever possible, control over their own destiny, but somehow we have to strike a better balance than what we have on the books right now.”
Currently, a doctor must seek approval from a judge before involuntarily medicating a patient, a process that can take months.
A.J. Ruben, supervising attorney for Disability Rights Vermont, part of a national advocacy system that receives federal money to provide protection and advocacy for people with developmental disabilities, said the problem with Vermont’s involuntary non-emergency medication system is it’s underfunded.
“From our perspective we do not think the law on involuntary non-emergency medication should be changed,” he said.
“If there is a delay in the system it is not because the law is not working, but because the system is underfunded and not working well.”MORE IN Vermont NewsTransportation officials and advocates for low-income Vermonters are looking for ways to reduce... Full StoryCOLCHESTER — When the lights go out on the deadly intruders, only Susan can find her way — she’s... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day 1739, 'Richard Palmer' identified in prison at York Castle as the notorious outlaw DICK TURPIN; IN 1836, Battle of the Alamo begins near San Antonio de Bexar, Texas; 1896, the Tootsie Roll invented by LEO HIRSCHFELD.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1472, Orkney, Shetland islands put up as collateral by Norway to Scotland in lieu of dowry for MARGARET OF DENMARK on her marriage with JAMES III, king of Scotland; 1962, JOHN GLENN first American to orbit Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City mayoral candidates debate campaign issues; Hartford, Conn., woman still missing; Neal Goswami reports attempts to legislate suicide; local woman loses 100 pounds through TOPS program.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1878, JOHN TUNSTALL murdered near Lincoln, New Mexico, by the outlaw JESSE EVANS; in 1930, ELM FARM OLLIE first cow to fly in aircraft, first to be milked airborne; 1955, nuke test WASP; '79, snow in Sahara.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Herald News Editor Alan J. Keays and staff writer Gordon Dritschilo discuss stories planned for the February 18, 2015, edition of the newspaper: Winter budgets maxed, legal marijuana, Springfield bank job, USPS slowdown
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1249 AD, ANDRE of LONGJUMEAU is dispatched by LOUIS IX of France to meet the KHAGAN, ruler of the Mongol Empire; in 1804, during 1st Barbary War, STEPHEN DECATUR scuttles the pirate-held USS Philadelphia in Tripoli.