Mental health legislation (A guide)

In this brief blog, we will be talking about mental health legislation, the mental health act in mental health legislation, mental health legislation in the UK, and more information about mental health legislation.

What Is The Mental Health Act?

The Mental Health Act is the main mental health legislation that covers the assessment, psychological intervention, and care for the individual who is affected by mental health issues.

For instance, this kind of Act has been talking about the coverage of detainment if the patient is found to be at risk of harming himself or herself or hurting other people. 

This mental health legislation handles those patients who may be in need of intensive treatments in a mental health hospital.

In other words, the patient is being detained against his or her will but this is considered necessary and this is called sectioned in this kind of Act. 

In other terms, it is called involuntary admission for the person being detained in a mental health hospital for his or her own good.

This mental health legislation is also responsible for making proper procedures on how patients should be cared for after hospital admission. 

This kind of mental health legislation is to protect people who have the risk of getting themselves harmed when they are outside hospital detainment and find it necessary that treatment is given in the hospital.

This kind of mental health legislation was even updated by 2007 in England. 

This kind of mental health legislation is made to implement the rights of the individual which include the following:

  • assessment and psychological intervention in hospital
  • Psychological intervention in the community
  • pathways or steps are taken into the hospital which can be civil or criminal

The Coverage Of The Mental Health Legislation

The Mental Health Act as a mental health legislation has different sections covering mental health processes.

The following are the information within this kind of legislation:

  • Your rights when you are detained in hospital against your preferences.
  • Your family’s rights when you are detained in a mental health hospital.
  • Your rights when you are detained in a mental health hospital and also part of the criminal justice system.
  • Your rights around consent to psychological intervention when you are detained.
  • Your rights when you are leaving the mental health hospital, involving how to have your section lifted and care management planning.
  • Your rights when you are being psychologically intervened in the community, for instance, getting section 117 aftercare or on a community treatment order (CTO).

There is specific information that is covered in this kind of mental health legislation when it comes to care and treatment.

These pieces of information are the Mental Health Act 1983 which is renewed by the 2007 Act and the Mental Capacity Act 2005, covering the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards. 

This kind of mental health legislation also covers the duty of care of mental health professionals to make sure that the patient is treated appropriately and safely.

This became an on opening for the 2007 Act to introduce the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards implemented from 2005. 

Some of the following mental health processes discussed will be elaborated in the further sections.

You can learn more about one of the coverages of this kind of mental health legislation by buying this book on this website.

The Process Of Discharge In The Mental Health Act

In the Mental Health Act as a mental health legislation, you can be discharged from the hospital by:

  • your responsible clinician
  • your nearest or closest relative
  • the hospital managers or employers
  • a tribunal

You will also be discharged from a mental health hospital when your section is not being updated by health professionals.

The clinician that is responsible for your discharge is typically the psychiatrist but some mental health professionals will be taking your discharge at times.

You can also ask hospital staff for your responsible mental health clinician.

The nearest relative or closest relative is a legal word in this mental health legislation.

This is not considered to be your closest family member. 

When you are detained under this mental health legislation, you can ask hospital authorities if you can ask about your discharge time.

You can even ask the hospital staff for an application form as part of this process.

The Role Of Your Nearest Relative

As mentioned before, the nearest relative or closest relative is a legal word in the Mental Health Act.

This relative will have some rights of some areas you have to deal with as part of this mental health legislation. 

These rights can only be used when you are detained in a mental health hospital under this mental health legislation.

This relative is not similar to your closest family member. 

The closest family member doesn’t have any rights under this mental health legislation.

This closest relative can ask for your assessment to tell if you are eligible to be detained in a mental health hospital under this mental health legislation. 

You can make an application in the County Court if you want to change or eliminate your closest relative.

Your nearest relative or closest relative can learn more about what to do and abide by this mental health legislation by buying this book on this website.

The Rights Of People With Mental Illness

The Mental Capacity Act is a mental health legislation that covers your capacity to make important decisions.

You are considered to lack mental capacity act when you meet two or more of the following:

  • Understand and analyze details about a decision
  • Remember or recall this information,
  • use this information to make a decision
  • communicate or open up about your decision.

A health professional can evaluate if you have enough mental capacity.

This mental health legislation can even set up who can make important decisions for you. 

Just because you have a mental health complication, this doesn’t mean you totally lack mental capacity.

After all, you can still set up some decisions for yourself when you are about to lose mental capacity in the future. 

If someone is made to make decisions for you, this person should make sure that he or she is making decisions for you and your needs.

This mental health legislation will cover you if you have the following requirements:

  • 16 or older
  • Live or situated in England and Wales.

If a person wants to delegate something because of his mental health concerns, he can ask for a mental health tribunal.

Community Treatment Order (CTO)

You can get a community treatment order (CTO) if you have been detained or sectioned in a mental health hospital under the Mental Health Act.

The clinician who is responsible for you will be covering this order for you. 

This order means that you will be supervised after you leave the mental health hospital.

You are obligated to follow the conditions of this order at all times. 

This is because these conditions are there to help you stay safe and well.

These conditions can also help you protect yourself from harm or protect yourself from hurting other people. 

This order will involve where you will get treatment for your mental health complication.

You can learn more about this order as part of this mental health legislation and how patients live with it by buying this book on this website. 

Aftercare For Outpatients And Discharged Patients

After-care is the care and support you get after leaving the mental health hospital.

The NHS and other mental health services can give you this care. 

As you might already know, your mental health affects you in various ways.

This is what the NHS and mental health services consider as your needs.

Your after-care can help you get your needs met.

For instance, you might need specialist housing, support from people who care about you, and how to interact with people in normal ways. 

The Care Programme Approach (CPA) can structure your after-care needs management.

This care will only be prevented when you don’t need additional support to make you have good mental wellbeing. 

If this care is not showing any benefits for you, you could file a complaint to authorities.

What Is The Mental Capacity Act?

The Mental Capacity Act is a mental health legislation that implements the need to take care of the person when he or she is assessed to lack mental capacity in making decisions that are in line with his or her best interests.

This kind of Act only applies to people who are 16 years old and above and may have a risk of losing their liberty and independence due to their lack of mental capacity. 

This kind of mental health legislation is compliant to the Code of Practice which covers ethics and these procedures are monitored by the Quality Care Commission.

This Act can also help those people who have lack of mental capacity to make future decisions about their money and living independently from caretakers. 

These kinds of decisions can only be made when you have some healthy ounce of mental capacity.

This kind of mental health legislation will be sticking to the fact that the decisions you have made are based on your best preference. 

You can learn more about the Code of Practice followed by this kind of mental health legislation by buying this book on this website.

The Assessment Process For Mental Capacity

The Mental Capacity Act has a psychological test for you to take to assess if you really have a lack of mental capacity.

This psychological assessment will be taking note of your decision-making skills that benefit your needs. 

This test is made to be like this since you might have some ounce of capacity left to make a decision but at the same time, you have a hard time making other decisions.

For instance, you might know that you need this psychological treatment for your condition but you are losing some of your limited budget in the process.

This psychological test covered by this mental health legislation is implemented in 2 stages.

  • Stage 1: there must be proof or evidence that you have a complication or injury that impacts the way your brain or mind works
  • Stage 2: if you do, if it impacts you so much that you are unable or incapable to make a specific decision at a specific time.

Stage 2 is only applied to affected people who have attempted to make important decisions themselves. 

The assessment process of mental health legislation follows the Code of Care which can help applicants have some independence of making decisions.

In other words, your mental complications don’t make you lose all the mental capacity but it merely suggests that you have some capacity in others and not in others. 

The Human Rights Act Of 1998

The Human Rights Act of 1998 has implemented changes to benefit the rights of mental health patients.

One of these rights is the fact that when a mental health patient is treated unfairly and abused will be allowed to make complaints in the UK courts. 

Another right is that the implementation of the courts to the Convention rights that have been implemented for mental health patients.

Another important right is that no one is above these kinds of rights such as public authorities. 

There is a section in this kind of mental health legislation that patients who have been mistreated by public authorities should be allowed to make complaints about those authorities.

The court process will follow an order that is considered to benefit both parties involved in the offence. 

The nature of mental complications allow patients to be detained against their will and makes this kind of mental health legislation to be more appropriate for psychiatrists than specialists in other mental health fields.

You can learn more about this act and how it affects patients by buying this book here.

Duty Of Care In The Mental Health Act

The Mental Health Act has been updated and renewed in late 2008.

This kind of mental health legislation has made it more possible for patients to have some independence than before. 

This kind of mental health legislation supports the individual dignity of mental health patients where they are first sought with consent if there is still viable evidence of mental capacity.

Although the detainment rules haven’t been completely changed, this is necessary when the patient is considered a risk in harming himself or herself or other people. 

The 2007 upgrade of this mental health legislation was also used as a pathway to introduce the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards into the MCA 2005 as mentioned before.

The following are the amendments made to support more mental health patients under this legislation:

  • Definition or meaning of mental disorder: a single definition applies and is practised throughout this kind of mental health legislation, references to groups of the disorder are eliminated.
  • Criteria for detention or section: to be detained or sectioned someone must be suffering or distressed from a mental disorder or complication that requires or obligates assessment or treatment and this needs to be given in hospital in the interests of their own health or safety or to protect other people.
  • Professional roles: this kind of mental health legislation replaced the role of the approved or authorized social worker with that of the approved mental health professional. The role is similar and obligates certain training in the practice of Mental Health legislation but practitioners are no longer obligated to have a social work qualification or training. These kinds of mental health professionals may be a psychologist, occupational therapist or psychiatric nurse
  • Nearest or closest relative: a patient may now make an application to the county court to displace or eliminate their nearest relative if they believe them to be not a suitable person to act as such as mentioned before.
  • Community Treatment Orders or community interventions:  were put in place to permit specific patients with a mental disorder or complication to be discharged from the hospital but supervised in the community to make sure, for instance, they remain taking their medication or get therapy. If they fail to follow with their treatment plan they can be returned to the mental health hospital. This is particularly intended to help prevent situations in which some patients leave the mental health hospital and do not remain with their treatment, with the outcome that their health gets more distressing and they are obligated for detention again 

The Code of Practice in the Mental Capacity Act obligates the need to get consent from individuals who are determined to lack mental capacity.

This includes restraining the patient only when there is the obligation to do this kind of action such as having a life-threatening risk in a patient.

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

Conclusion

In this brief blog, we have talked about mental health legislation, the mental health act in mental health legislation, mental health legislation in the UK, and more information about mental health legislation.

If you have any questions about mental health legislation, please let us know and the team will gladly answer your queries.

FAQs: mental health legislation

What are the 5 principles of Mental Capacity Act?

The 5 principles of the Mental Capacity Act are an assumption or allegation of mental capacity, applicants being supported for making their own decisions, evaluating or assessing unwise decisions that may be made, making sure that the applicant’s best interests are taken properly, and less restrictive or inhibitory choices for these clients.

What is a Section 3 in mental health?

A Section 3 in mental health is a section that allows for a person to be admitted to hospital for treatment if their mental disorder or mental complication is of nature and/or level that requires intervention in hospital.

Additionally, it must be necessary or obligatory for their health and their safety or for the protection of other people that they receive intervention in the hospital.

Who can carry out capacity assessments?

The people who can carry out capacity assessments are based on the client’s preference.

This is because this follows one of the principles in the Mental Capacity Act which is to take the client’s best interests or preferences in mind.

What happens in a mental health act assessment?

In a mental health act assessment, the client will be tested to make a decision if he or she should be detained in a mental health hospital as implemented or authorized in the Mental Health Act to make sure you get the care you need for your resulting mental disorder or mental complication. 

Can a GP assess mental capacity?

Yes, a GP can assess mental capacity in an alleged to patient to have some measure of a lack of mental capacity.

This only occurs if the client has the capacity to make legal decisions on his or her case. GPs are asked to make this kind of assessment with the client if the client can give consent without the need of another assist such as a closest relative.

Citations

BMJ Journals. Human Rights Act 1998 and mental health legislation: implications for the management of mentally ill patients.

Mind. Mental Health Act 1983.

NHS. Mental Health Act.

NHS AWP. Mental health legislation.

Rethink Mental Illness. Mental Health Laws.

SCIE. Key legislation – Mental Health Act 1983.

Was this post helpful?