The Department of Health and Social Care have published their response to the consultation on reforming the Mental Health Act (pdf).
In 2017 the government asked for an independent review of the Mental Health Act 1983, to look at how it’s used and to suggest ways to improve it. The review’s final report said that the Mental Health Act does not always work as well as it should for patients, their families and their carers.
Following this the government hosted a public consultation from 13 January 2021 to 21 April 2021 on a set of proposals to reform the Mental Health Act.
The government’s formal response to this consultation sets out their plans to make substantial changes to the Mental Health Act, based on 4 principles:
- choice and autonomy – ensuring service users’ views and choices are respected
- least restriction – ensuring the Act’s powers are used in the least restrictive way
- therapeutic benefit – ensuring patients are supported to get better, so they can be discharged from the Act
- the person as an individual – ensuring patients are viewed and treated as individuals