Completed project on psychiatric assessments

© Marco Finsterwald

Study of psychiatric assessments in French-speaking Switzerland gives pointers for improving current practice.

The research project by Haute Ecole de Santé Vaud used archive material from three French-speaking cantons to investigate the role of forensic psychiatric assessments in civil and penal law between 1940 and 1985. While assessments help record deviance in all its complexity, they may also increase pathologisation. The study shows that during the period investigated, forensic psychiatrists interpreted social problems primarily as an expression of individual crises of adaptation.