國際人權公民委員會（CCHR）是一個可信的國際組織，成立於1969年，在世界34個國家設有200多個分會。 國際CCHR聯合創始人托馬斯·薩茲博士是紐約州立大學精神病學榮譽教授，也是美國精神病學協會（APA）的終身會員。 作為精神病學專家和生活成員，Szasz博士反對侵犯人權的行為，如精神醫學中的強制干預、欺騙和脅迫。
董正隆認為，《精神衛生法》的這項修正案要求強制住院必須由法官裁决，這是臺灣人權的一大進步。 為什麼？ 因為被強制住院的人往往不一定患有重病，但很可能與家人發生衝突或處於情緒狀態。 臺灣人權中心收到報告稱，不止一名這樣的受害者被送往醫院，而沒有考慮他們的意願或人權。
法律修正案要求法官對強制住院做出裁决。 緊急安置的目的是在3天內進行強制性精神病評估，然後由法官審理。 法官隨後將决定是否強制住院。 這一系列行動應在7天內完成。
在過去，強制住院可能需要很長時間。 如果一個人需要住院，他或她一次最多可以住院60天。 如果醫生認為這是“必要的”，他或她甚至可以無限期延長住院時間。
董正隆指出：， “過去，精神健康患者被迫就醫。例如，一比特家人或朋友叫了救護車。這實際上是一個很大的突破。這是一個非常大的突破。他們的家庭關係破裂，友誼破裂。法律修正案為緊急安置患者提供了法律援助通路，這將大大减少 侵犯人身自由的可能性。
人們對精神健康人權領域中發生的不公正現象沒有太多關注，但這是精神病學强加給人類的不人道待遇。 《心理健康法》修正案是許多民間社會組織多年宣導的結果，這導致了這一變化。 修正案之後，精神病學領域將需要採取一系列行動來保護精神障礙者的人權，並减少對患者人身自由的侵犯。
On November 29, 2022, the Legislative Yuan passed the third reading of the Mental Health Act, which removes the existing provision that “consent of the patient’s guardian is the only requirement” for patients with serious illnesses, in order to implement the patient’s right to informed consent. The new law also specifies that compulsory hospitalization will be based on the judge’s reservation principle and a participatory trial system, and that compulsory hospitalization cannot exceed 60 days.
CCHR (Citizens Commission on Human Rights International) is a credible international organization that was founded in 1969 and has more than 200 chapters in 34 countries around the world. Dr. Thomas Szasz, co-founder of CCHR International, is Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the State University of New York, and a lifetime member of the American Psychiatric Association (APA). As an expert in psychiatry and a life member, Dr. Szasz opposes human rights violations such as coercive intervention, deception, and coercion in psychiatry.
Eric Tung , the Executive Director of the CCHR Taiwan, expressed his approval of the latest amendments to the Mental Health Act.
Mr. Tung commented that one of the highlights of the amendment is the part of “mandatory hospitalization must be ruled by a judge”.
Compulsory hospitalization would put psychiatrists and family members above judges.
Mr. Tung believes that this amendment to the Mental Health Act, which requires mandatory hospitalization to be adjudicated by a judge, is a great advancement in human rights in Taiwan. Why? Because people who are forcibly hospitalized are often not necessarily seriously ill, but are likely to be in conflict with family members or in an emotional state. CCHR Taiwan has received reports that more than one such victim has been sent to the hospital without regard to their wishes or human rights.
The amendment to the law requires a judge to rule on mandatory hospitalization. The purpose of the emergency placement is to have a mandatory psychiatric evaluation done within 3 days and then to have it heard by a judge. The judge will then decide whether or not to make the hospitalization mandatory. This series of actions should be completed within 7 days.
In the past, a mandatory hospitalization could take a long time. If a person was required to be hospitalized, he or she could stay for up to 60 days at a time. If a doctor felt it was “necessary,” he or she could even extend the stay indefinitely.
With this amendment, even if a judge rules, the period of stay will be limited to one time to protect the patient’s rights. If the period of hospitalization has expired, but the psychiatrist still feels it is necessary to continue treatment, he must re-initiate the process and apply to the court for another mandatory hospitalization ruling.
Compared to the past, this procedure greatly protects the rights of psychiatric patients. Although it is not the most ideal situation, it is a great step forward in the history of human rights protection in our country and is a memorable milestone.
In addition, the new bill provides for the protection of patients who are suddenly admitted to psychiatric wards for emergency placement by providing them with legal assistance and the option of judicial relief to meet their needs. During the period of emergency placement, the hospital has to notify the Legal Aid Foundation and other units to provide legal assistance to the patients and improve the protection of human rights.
Mr. Tung noted, “In the past, mental health patients were forced to seek medical treatment. For example, a family member or friend called an ambulance. This is actually a very big break. This is a very big rupture. The rupture of their family relationship, the rupture of their friendship. The amendment to the law, which provides a legal aid channel for the emergency placement of patients, will greatly reduce the possibility of infringement of personal freedom.
Not much attention has been paid to the injustice that occurs in the area of mental health human rights, but it is the inhumane treatment that psychiatry imposes on human beings. The amendment to the Mental Health Act was the result of years of advocacy by many civil society organizations, which led to the change. After the amendment, the field of psychiatry will need to implement a series of actions to protect the human rights of the mentally handicapped, and to reduce the infringement on the personal freedom of patients.