Reappraising community treatment orders — can there be consensus?

Steve Kisely and Richard O’Reilly
Med J Aust 2015; 202 (8): . || doi: 10.5694/mja14.00663
Published online: 4 May 2015

Community treatment orders have become standard practice without serious consideration of the underlying research base

Community treatment orders (CTOs) require someone with a mental illness to follow a treatment plan while living in the community.1 Initially, debate focused on the ethical justification for CTOs, but subsequently shifted to their effectiveness. These considerations are particularly relevant to Australia as a few states, such as Victoria, have among the highest rates of CTO use in the world.2 Further, CTOs may also be incompatible with Australia's obligations to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.3 Here, we present a consensus from two authors who have previously expressed very different views on the use of CTOs.1

  • Steve Kisely1
  • Richard O’Reilly2

  • 1 University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD.
  • 2 Western University, London, Ontario, Canada.


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.


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