Waushara County v. F.E.K., 2014AP2987, District 4, 4/30/15 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity
The evidence was sufficient to show F.E.K. was not competent to refuse medication or treatment because he received an appropriate explanation of the alternatives to medication and treatment.
To prove that a person committed under ch. 51 is not competent to refuse medication or treatment, the County must prove, among other things, that the person has received an explanation of “the advantages and disadvantages of and alternatives to accepting the particular medication or treatment…,” § 51.61(1)(g)4. A psychologist testified that she discussed with F.E.K. the “various medications and treatment” that she thought were “appropriate and necessary” to treat F.E.K. and “the potential benefits and negatives of the medication.” This was sufficient to satisfy § 51.61(1)(g)4. (¶¶10-11). It was not necessary for the psychologist to have explained alternatives to the medication or treatment F.E.K. was receiving if she concluded those alternatives were not reasonable, appropriate, or necessary, K.S. v. Winnebago County, 147 Wis. 2d 575, 579, 433 N.W.2d 291 (Ct. App. 1988) (“mental health professionals are not required to explore medically unaccepted and unrecognized alternatives”). (¶12).