Montana Supreme Court Halts Forced Medication
The Montana Supreme Court has reversed a medical order forcing a woman with bipolar disorder to take medication, ruling that doctors could not medicate her against her will. The 72-year-old woman was involuntarily committed to the Montana State Hospital in October 2015 because her mental illness prevented her from getting housing, according to the Montana Supreme Court decision filed on Tuesday. The High Court overturned a Yellowstone County District Court decision to allow the forced medication.
The Supreme Court said that while the involuntary commitment was based on evidence presented in the commitment hearing, they found no evidence to support the woman receiving medication for bipolar disorder without her permission. Montana law gives patients the right to be “free from unnecessary or excessive medication. In September 2015, the Yellowstone County Attorney’s office filed a request with the District Court to involuntarily commit the woman to the Montana State Hospital.