Guardianship of people with mental disorders

Yuval Melamed*, Israel Doron, Dan Shnitt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The duty of a guardian is to protect a patient who is unable to care for himself or herself. Guardianship has been considered an abrogation of autonomy while conversely it often prevents irreversible harm to the patient. We examined the decision-making process for appointing a guardian in 60 cases from one mental health center in Israel, by examining the patients' medical records and court appeals. The results of our study suggest that guardians are usually appointed only in extreme cases, though alternative solutions are rarely sought, and that clear criteria for physicians when recommending guardianship are lacking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1118-1123
Number of pages6
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 2007


  • Decision-making process
  • Guardianship
  • Israel
  • Mental disorders


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