Suicide and mental disorder: the legal perspective

Saxby Pridmore
Med J Aust 2010; 193 (3): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2010.tb03846.x
Published online: 2 August 2010

To the Editor: The medical view, which is repeatedly stated in the literature,1-3 is that up to 100% of those who complete suicide are suffering from a mental disorder. This leaves many doctors feeling they can be held responsible for all those who suicide, including those for whom there is no evidence of mental disorder. A recent High Court of Australia judgment, Stuart v Kirkland-Veenstra,4 illustrates that the medical and legal views of the relationship between suicide and mental disorder are different.

  • Saxby Pridmore

  • University of Tasmania, Hobart, TAS.



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