Controversial ethical issues in forensic psychiatry: a survey

J Forensic Sci. 1988 Jan;33(1):176-86.


A survey was conducted of members of the Psychiatry and Behavioral Science section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS) to determine their ethical concerns about controversial items. Issues were included in the survey from the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and AAFS Code of Ethics. Strong support was found for those issues. Some AAPL items from a previous version of their guidelines did not receive support. Fortunately, they have been modified in a later AAPL draft, after AAPL received this survey's results. Clarification was obtained on some ambiguous items from a previous AAFS survey. The present survey showed strong support for addressing in forensic psychiatry's ethical guidelines some issues previously considered too controversial.

MeSH terms

  • Codes of Ethics
  • Ethics, Medical*
  • Expert Testimony
  • Forensic Psychiatry*
  • Law Enforcement*
  • Mentally Ill Persons
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States