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Gurpal

Debate No.4 (July/August 2002) - Mental Health Act

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The Government has just launched the consultation process on the draft of the Mental Health Bill. You can read it here: http://www.doh.gov.uk/mentalhealth/draftbill2002/consdoc.htm

Debate: THE NEW MENTAL HEALTH BILL IS A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION

The proposed legislation introduces a number of changes, including the power to force patients in the community to receive treatment and the power to detain people with personality disorders even though they were thought to be untreatable. Such changes are long overdue.

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:-Xthis is going back to the gulag days,hopefully the people weilding such power will exercise it with due care and integrity,the primary principle of medical ethics,autonomy, is breached here ,even when capacity is present,frankly i do not want to be a jailer!

what is treatment?

how long is community tratment?

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it would certainly be useful to the chronic patients who constantly relapse and are at our doorstep on a sec3 just because nothing much can be done in the community! i suppose even help/ enforcing self care is some kind of treatment.

the treatability of personality disorders is something else though ???

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drive toward community oriented treatment due to financial and to destgmatise

public perception of mental illness and crime despite much evidence that few crimes are committed by mentally ill and no increase after deinstitutalisation

community treatment order(iot): no evidence that its benefiscial.can be argued that patients will not have to undergo the strees of being detained as inpatient.It may also lead to more patients coerced in to IOT with little benefit.there is public support for such laws.psychitrist to decide who will benefir from IOT.

widening mental disorder,removing treatability clause

dspd-though strict ,narrow diagnosti criteria,very poor noslogically.if it works will open floodgates for finance and services to treat very unpopular group.

politically driven?

mental health laws reflects present public attitudes towards mental ilness and treatments.government sandwiched between human rights and public outcry whenever there is an homicidal incidence which receives

bad press

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AGAINST

Special laws are not needed we should use the existing laws more effectively.

A person who has a psychiatric diagnosis such as BPAD or Schizophrenia goes through periods of being competent and not. If they should commit a crime whilst compettent then they should be subject to the law.

In the case of crimes being committed whilst unwell then I believe the state has the right to enforce humane treatment based on social utilitarianism and patient welfare.

Personality disorders are more tricky as this 'illness' is always active to some degree. I am against because there is something political about the nature of these illnesses. I believe they are competent.

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I think we sometimes make too much of this treatability malarkey. How many patients do we have that even with clozapine etc etc still have a grumbling illness and present problems or depression/dysthymia that won't shift. Don't we 'manage behaviours arising from' functional disorders a lot more than we'd like to believe?

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AGAINST

It (involuntary community treatment) is a difficult thing to enforce and blurs the boundaries further between institution and community.

A person subject to it may be rendered incapable of safely remaining in the community.

It's kind of crypto-fascist in a new labour sort of way.

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I agree that the community treatment bit is a bit of a farce-

Are we supposed to have hit squads of nurses turning up on people's doorsteps with depot injections?

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They have backed down!

Now then..all you young 'uns just have to waste your vote in an election voted in by only 23% of the population and the result is valid!!!

Call me a cynical old fart but all we can do is try....forever!!!

One day..one day...

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Are we supposed to have hit squads of nurses turning up on people's doorsteps with depot injections?

i favour the idea of snipers with depot-rifles on clock towers in city centres

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