Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Katherine B. Killoran
Forensic psychiatry is a subspecialty of psychiatry, a field of medicine. The American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law endorses the following definition of the profession, as adopted by the American Board of Forensic Psychiatry: “Forensic psychiatry is a subspecialty of psychiatry in which scientific and clinical expertise is applied to legal issues in legal contexts embracing civil, criminal, and correctional or legislative matters; forensic psychiatry should be practiced in accordance with guidelines and ethical principles enunciated by the profession of psychiatry.” Forensic psychiatrists work in many settings—forensic hospital units, community mental health centers, court clinics, juvenile treatment centers, prisons, and private practice—conducting forensic evaluation and treatment relevant to legal decision making. Forensic psychiatrists may also work in policy-making or advocacy organizations, using their expertise to influence the development of law, legislation, public policy, government services, and legal procedures affecting the mentally ill. Forensic psychiatrists also examine and evaluate individuals ...