The annual Mental Health Act report, published today by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), looks at the care and treatment people received when they are held under various sections of the Mental Health Act.
Key findings include:
- 20 per cent of care plans don’t show evidence of considering the patient’s view of treatment.
- 17 per cent don’t show evidence of involvement.
- 20 per cent don’t show evidence of discharge planning.
Responding to this report, Alison Cobb, Specialist Policy Advisor at Mind, said:
“It is positive to see some improvements to people’s experiences when they have been sectioned under the Mental Health Act, especially when it comes to the quality of care planning, however there are still huge concerns about how little say people have over their own care.
"One in five (20 per cent) of care plans don’t take into account the patient’s view of treatment, 17 per cent fail to show any involvement with the patient, and 20 per cent of care plans don’t include planning for people after they’ve left hospital - something which should be done from the start. A key recommendation to come out of the Mental Health Act Review (MHAR) was to give patients more choice and control over their care through shared decision making, so it’s clear this still isn’t happening.
“This report also highlights concerns around patient safety. When people are at their most unwell, they should be treated with dignity and respect. What happens to people while they’re in hospital is as much a concern as the basis on which people are admitted to hospital. Wards should be therapeutic, calm, and well-designed to support people in with their recovery and treatment. Anecdotally we often hear that hospitals can be stark and inhospitable for those receiving treatment. When people are sectioned they can be subject to unnecessary restrictions and practices such as physical restraint, seclusion or forced medication. There must be a focus on both the social and physical environment of wards if we are to see improvements in people’s experiences.
“There is a huge amount of work still to do before everyone gets high quality mental health care and support they need. The cost of getting this wrong can be catastrophic. The recommendations from the MHAR are key, and many of them can start to be put in place now. We do not need to wait for new legislation before we improve people’s experiences. What we need is a joined up and urgent commitment to making sure people are kept safe, helping more people stay well and reducing the chance of people becoming more unwell later on.”