Coercion in health care
summary The use of various forms of coercion within the care system for chronic psychiatric patients requires ethical justification. A case analysis is performed with the help of Giddens' structuring theory. The analysis shows that the structure of the psychiatric health system is determined by the given significance by the system and by the norms and power relations. Coercive measures are also moulded by these structural factors. The analysis shows that the way in which coercion is exercised and is further deployed, is embedded in the care process. The care process in its turn bears the normative characteristics of the care system in which care is given. One needs to take full account of the content and structure of the care system before making an ethical judgement about the use of coercion.