Resource Allocation and Forensic Ethics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Developing a comprehensive theory of forensic ethics has proved a challenge for the profession since Alan Stone questioned the presence of psychiatrists in the courtroom in 1982. Two schools of thought have developed: a “principlist” approach associated with Appelbaum and an approach focused on narrative and context associated with Griffith. Both approaches, and their intellectual progeny, focus primarily upon the relationship between forensic evaluator, forensic subject, and the legal system. Yet the scarcity of forensic psychiatrists renders them a resource whose allocation, of-ten self-driven, has significant implications for ethics. Rather than focus primarily upon questions related to subject-evaluator relations and evaluator work product, a comprehensive ethic for forensic psychiatry must also prioritize the ethics concerns of resource allocation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-60
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2023


  • ethics
  • resource allocation
  • scarcity


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