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Letter: Help stop vulnerable people being excluded from decisions about their own health care

Date published: 29 January 2017


Dear Editor,

Each year there are 50,000 detentions under the Mental Health Act.

This means people can be given treatment without their consent and are often deprived of their liberty during their detention. It is a time when a person's human rights become vital.

Yet, alarmingly, research shows that only half of people detained would have had the opportunity to access to an independent mental health advocate to help them to have a voice and real influence in their mental health treatment and care decisions.

This means that in more than 25,000 of cases annually a person detained was denied access to their legal right to have an advocate support them

The Independent Mental Health Advocacy Society has started a petition calling on the government to make sure that independent mental health advocacy (IMHA) is vitally reformed so that:

IMHA is made fully accessible and works for all people who are inpatients in mental health services and in the community receiving treatment under the Mental Health Act.
IMHA workers and services are supported to carry out their role safely and effectively.
Interested readers can read more and sign the petition at:

https://www.change.org/p/jeremy-hunt-mp-secretary-of-state-for-health-stop-vulnerable-people-being-excluded-from-decisions-about-their-mental-health-care

Thank you.

Yours,

Andrew Wastling

The views expressed are those of the author of the letter and not those of Rochdale Online.


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