The new Mental Health Act 2007 substantially amends the Mental Health Act 1983. In this article, some of the most important changes are highlighted, including changes to…
The new Mental Health Act 2007 substantially amends the Mental Health Act 1983. In this article, some of the most important changes are highlighted, including changes to the definition of mental disorder, the new professional roles of approved mental health practitioner and responsible clinician, and the new powers for Supervised Community Treatment. The likely impact of these changes for people with learning disability and professionals working with them is discussed.
The UK Government has been planning changes to mental health legislation for at least eight years. On 23 March 2006, the Department of Health announced that many of these…
The UK Government has been planning changes to mental health legislation for at least eight years. On 23 March 2006, the Department of Health announced that many of these plans would proceed ‐ although through amendments to the 1983 Mental Health Act rather than a substantive Bill. These proposed reforms are significant but controversial. This paper sets out some of the reasons for welcoming the proposed changes. It is argued that the proposals to replace the responsible medical officer with a clinical supervisor are in keeping with best quality mental health care, and allow for proper multidisciplinary practice. Such an approach explicitly permits proper use of the skills and competencies of the workforce ‐ including psychologists. A second controversial aspect of the proposed reforms ‐ supervised community treatment orders, permitting compulsory care outside of hospitals ‐ represent not a violation of human rights, but a specific defence of ‘Article 8’ rights to protection of family and personal life. Finally, it is argued that the proposed amendments are important because mental health legislation dominates mental health care and the present 1983 Mental Health Act inappropriately consolidates the status of the medical model and the role of the responsible medical officer (and hence psychiatry). It is argued that the proposed changes are imperfect; in particular they lack inclusion of an ‘impaired judgement’ criterion, but it is suggested that necessary role and service redesign needs such amendments to allow the new ways of working programme to ‘bite’.
Major changes are taking place in the law for those working in the mental health field. This article looks at the impact of the Mental Capacity Act (2005) (most of which was implemented in October 2007) and the Mental Health Act (2007) (the main provisions of which came into effect in October 2008). Key elements of each of these two acts will be covered. The ‘Bournewood Safeguards’ inserted into the Mental Capacity Act (2005) by the Mental Health Act (2007) will also be described.
The modernisation of mental health legislation took time in England and Wales, and resulted in an amendment to the law through the Mental Health Act 2007. The changes…
The modernisation of mental health legislation took time in England and Wales, and resulted in an amendment to the law through the Mental Health Act 2007. The changes under way are extensive, and will affect the mental health workforce. This article outlines some of the changes and new roles, and argues that workforce changes are important features of the new legislation that confirm policy goals of integrated working and practice.
This study explored the experiences of detention under the Mental Health Act (1983) of people with learning disabilities. Semi‐structured one‐to‐one interviews (N = 7) were analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis. Participants had mild learning disabilities and had been detained under the Mental Health Act in England for compulsory assessment and treatment within a two‐year period prior to the study. A number of valuable insights emerged, including: the impact of perceived lack of control over self, experiences of vulnerability/powerlessness/ victimisation (both prior to and following detention), participant's sense of care versus punishment; the development of ‘role’ within the mental health system and attribution of blame. The study helps expand the current literature on experiences of people with learning disabilities from their perspective, identifies the possible emotional impact of detention and indexes the range of coping styles elicited between participants in the face of detention.
The purpose of this paper is to examine safeguarding adults reviews (SARs) that refer to mental health legislation in order to contribute to the review of English mental…
The purpose of this paper is to examine safeguarding adults reviews (SARs) that refer to mental health legislation in order to contribute to the review of English mental health law (2018).
Searches of a variety of sources were conducted to compile a list of relevant SARs. These are summarised and their contexts assessed for what they reveal about the use and coherence of mental health legislation.
The interaction of the statutes under consideration, in particular the Mental Health Act (MHA) 1983, the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005, together with the Care Act 2014, presents challenges to practitioners and the efficacy of their application is variable.
In light of the absence of a duty to report SARs to a national register, it is possible that relevant SARs were missed in the search phase of this research, meaning that the results do not present a complete picture.
Examining cases where use of legislative provisions in mental health has been found wanting or legislation may not be easily implemented may inform initiatives to increase understanding of the law in this area.
This paper’s originality and value lie in its focus on mental health legislation as discussed in SARs at a time when both the MHA 1983 and the MCA 2005 are the focus of attention for reform.
This paper aims to examine reform of mental health legislation in England and Wales. It covers the period from the introduction of the 1983 MHA to the proposed reforms…
This paper aims to examine reform of mental health legislation in England and Wales. It covers the period from the introduction of the 1983 MHA to the proposed reforms outlined in the Wessley Review that was published in December 2018.
This is a literature-based project.
Reform of the mental health legislation reflects two potentially conflicting strands. One is the state’s power to incarcerate the “mad”, and the other is the move to protect the civil rights of those who are subject to such legislation. The failures to development adequately funded community-based mental health services and a series of inquiries in the 1990s led to the introduction of Community Treatment Orders in the 2007 reform of the MHA.
The development of mental health policy has seen a shift towards more coercive approaches in mental health.
The successful reform of the MHA can only be accomplished alongside investment in community mental health services.
The paper highlights the tensions between the factors that contribute to mental health legislation reform.
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 (MCA) was fully implemented in October 2007 within England and Wales as a framework for making decisions about incapacitated persons' care and…
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 (MCA) was fully implemented in October 2007 within England and Wales as a framework for making decisions about incapacitated persons' care and treatment generally not amounting to a deprivation of their liberty (although such could be authorised under its powers by the new Court of Protection). From a planned date of April 2009, the MCA is to be enlarged by the provisions of the Mental Health Act 2007 (MHA 2007) to encompass deprivation of liberty, with the addition of a new framework of Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS). The MHA 2007 also revised significant aspects of the Mental Health Act 1983 (MHA), which were implemented in November 2008. The interface between the MCA, as amended to include DOLS, and the revised MHA is complex and potentially ambiguous. This paper describes in detail some issues that may arise at the interface of the two acts, and seeks to inform professionals involved in the use of these legal frameworks of the resulting complexity.