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Involuntary Medication Back In The Spotlight

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The controversial issue of involuntary medication for psychiatric patients is resurfacing because of language included in Gov. Peter Shumlin's proposed budget.

The Shumlin administration's proposed budget includes language that would speed up the legal process of getting permission to involuntarily medicate psychiatric patients - two years after a 2014 law that spurred debate over the issue.

Advocates say streamlining the process further would save money and improve outcomes for patients. Opponents say it's another step in chipping away at patients' rights.  We're looking at the proposed changes and the cases for and against.

We're joined by Dr. Jay Batra, medical director for the Vermont Department of Mental Health, and by Jack McCullough, who directs the Mental Health Law Project for Vermont Legal Aid.

Also on the program, the Soteria Vermont house has been open in Burlington and providing an alternative model of mental health treatment for nearly a year now. We'll check in on the project with Laura Sisson, a member of the Soteria development team at Pathways Vermont.

Broadcast live on Tues., March 15, 2016, at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.