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To the Editor:
—In The Journal, July 9, H. A. D. of Buffalo asks the reason for the high suicide rate of cities in California. A partial reply was made by Mr. L. E. Ross of the California State Board of Health. In my opinion the most potent cause is the antiquated laws existing in California in regard to the committment of the mentally sick to state hospitals. The law requires that in order that a patient may receive treatment in a state hospital the complaining witness must make affidavit that the patient is "so far disordered in his mind as to endanger health, person or property." The patient is placed under arrest by police or sheriff; held under observation (in some places in the county jail) for at least twenty-four hours; tried in open court, and if adjudged insane by a judge of the superior court is turned over
Reid EC. SUICIDE IN CALIFORNIA. JAMA. 1927;89(6):469. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02690060049031
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