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The internet resource on mental health law in England & Wales, primarily for mental health practitioners, to which anyone can contribute. From April 2006 to September 2010 this website was called Wiki Mental Health.

Recent updates on website

For further details of the items below, and for further updates, see the Updates page:

  • 24/07/14 (3): Repatriation case. R (MD) v SSHD (2014) EWHC 2249 (Admin), (2014) MHLO 52 — "In my judgment, the Claimant's detention was unlawful from the 21st October 2011 until her release on the 13th September 2012 by reason of a breach of the third Hardial Singh principle and from the 16th February 2012 until her release on the 13th September 2012 due to the failure of the Defendant to properly understand and apply her policy regarding the detention of those with serious mental illness to the circumstances of the Claimant's case. So the Claimant's detention was unlawful both at common law and under Article 5 of the ECHR. I have also found that the Claimant's treatment by the Defendant by detaining her in the circumstances I have set out above amounted to inhuman and degrading treatment in breach of Article 3 of the ECHR."

  • 24/07/14 (2): Alex Ruck Keene, 'A melancholy but profound milestone' (Mental Capacity Law and Policy, 24/7/14). This article describes the court's best interests decision on artificial nutrition and hydration as momentous because of its approach to a patient in a minimally-conscious state. See United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust v N (2014) EWCOP 16, (2014) MHLO 51

  • 24/07/14 (1): Medical case. United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust v N (2014) EWCOP 16, (2014) MHLO 51 — "The critical decision is whether it is in N's best interests to continue invasive, risk laden, medical care as would be involved in a further attempt at artificial feeding. I am utterly convinced that it would not. Accordingly, I declare that it is lawful and in her best interests for the clinicians (a) not to make any further attempt to secure a means of providing artificial nutrition; (b) to withdraw the provision of intravenous fluids and dextrose; and (c) to provide such palliative care and related treatment (including pain relief) as considered appropriate to ensure she suffers the least distress and retains the greatest dignity until such time as her life comes to an end."

  • 22/07/14 (4): Criminal appeal. R (M) v Kingston Crown Court (2014) MHLO 50 (DC) — M had admitted to GBH but the Crown wanted to pursue GBH with intent, and the judge made an order under s35 (remand for report) to gather evidence about intent. (1) The purpose of an order under s35 was to inform the court of a defendant’s fitness to plead and his diagnosis, not to advance one party’s claim. (2) The judge’s misinterpretation of s35 was a jurisdictional error so the High Court was entitled (despite the limitation in s29(3) Senior Courts Act 1981) to quash the order made under it.

  • 22/07/14 (3): Ministry of Justice, 'MAPPA guidance' (version 4, 2012). Link to this guidance added. See MAPPA

  • 22/07/14 (2): Transfer procedure. R (L) v West London MH NHS Trust (2014) EWCA Civ 47, (2014) MHLO 49 — (1) There was no challenge to the first instance judge's finding that the common law duty of procedural fairness applies to decisions to transfer from medium to high security. (2) However, the judge had gone beyond what fairness requires, by requiring an overly-adversarial procedure. (3) Relief should not have been given on the facts of L's case, including because he had been able to put across his side of a disputed incident and had ceased objecting to transfer. (4) The ability of the decision-making process to achieve fairness has an undesirable element of fortuity. The decision-making process should therefore be "amended so that, absent urgency, a clinical reason precluding such notification, or some other reason such as the exposure of other patients or staff to the risk of harm, the 'gists' of the letter of reference to the high security hospital by the hospital that wishes to transfer the patient and the assessment by the clinician from the high security hospital are provided to the patient and/or his representative, and that the patient be afforded an opportunity to make written submissions to the panel."

See also the to do list

* To help clear a backlog of updates, some news items will be added to the Updates page without being added anywhere else on the website (for now), and will be marked with asterisks.
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