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The Government remain committed to reforming the Mental health Act so that patients who may require treatment under the act have greater autonomy and control over the treatment they receive and get the ‘dignity and respect’ they deserve.
The White Paper was published in January 2021 setting out the Government’s proposed reform to the legislation. The reform was based on four principles:
1. Choice and autonomy – ensuring service users’ views and choices are respected
2. Least restriction – ensuring the Act’s powers are used in the least restrictive way
3. Therapeutic benefit – ensuring patients are supported to get better, so they can be discharged from the Act.
4. The person as an individual – ensuring patients are viewed and treated as individuals.
A 14 week public consultation followed which had over 1700 responses which had ‘overwhelmingly’ positive responses. The Government will now work closely with stakeholders to test and develop policies.