Advance directives in mental health and the revocation problem


  • Pablo Marshall Universidad Austral de Chile
  • Hernán Gómez Yuri Universidad Diego Portales


This paper seeks to address the bioethical problem of the collision of wills that may occur during the implementation of advance directives in mental health, with special emphasis on self-binding directives, pointing out certain guidelines to be observed in order to adequately regulate this circumstance, determining those manifestations and behaviors that should count as revocation of the instructions contained in the document. For these purposes, a methodology consisting of a review of the relevant literature is used. It is concluded that it is impossible to find a solution that satisfies all the conflicting interests, but that the implementation of effective advance directives in mental health requires a regulation that grants them a certain degree of rigidity, establishing, in a clear and coherent manner, the circumstances in which they are to be understood as revoked, whether an evaluation of capacity is used or the determination of the circumstances of revocation is left to the user himself.


advance directives, psychiatric advance directive, self-binding directive, mental health, personal autonomy