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March 5, 1997

The Nuremberg Code, Informed Consent, and Involuntary Treatment-Reply

Author Affiliations

Health Law Department Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health Boston, Mass

JAMA. 1997;277(9):713-714. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03540330035028

In Reply.  —The major focus of our Editorial was on how physicians and lawyers can work together to promote human rights and medical ethics as a fitting legacy to the way physicians and lawyers worked together at Nuremberg to bring the Nazi physicians to justice. Among other things, we proposed a new organization, Global Physicians and Lawyers for Human Rights, and have been gratified by the positive response to date. Rather than addressing the global challenge of promoting human rights, the letters from Drs Borelli, Tiedt, and Howe reflect narrow and idiosyncratic agendas.Borelli seems to have missed our specific reference to the continuing problem of "using psychiatrists to drug prisoners for easier control." However, we do agree that Dr Szasz deserves to be singled out for his consistent and powerful work supporting the rights of the mentally ill, including his early and strong endorsement of informed consent in his 1963 book,