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Court: No involuntary commitment for Alzheimer’s

WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) — A state appeals court says Alzheimer’s patients cannot be involuntarily committed for treatment.

The District II Court of Appeals in Waukesha reversed a lower court ruling and said an 85-year-old Fond du Lac woman with Alzheimer’s doesn’t suffer from a “qualifying mental condition” under Wisconsin’s involuntary commitment law, known as Chapter 51. It allows that someone with a mental illness, drug dependency or developmental disability to be detained on an emergency basis if they could harm themselves or others.

The Fond du Lac woman, identified only as Helen E.F., was detained under Chapter 51 in April 2010.

The Journal Sentinel says there are about 110,000 people with Alzheimer’s disease in Wisconsin.

Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com

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