The Approved Mental Health Professional's Guide to Mental by Robert Brown

By Robert Brown

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Extra info for The Approved Mental Health Professional's Guide to Mental Health (Post-Qualifying Social Work Practice), 2nd Edition

Sample text

If they accept from the outset that there is no need for assessment in hospital and that it is appropriate just to look at section 3 the implications of R v Wilson ex p. Williamson (1996) may prove problematic. The case has been widely quoted to support the view that using a section 2 as a stopgap measure because a section 3 has been blocked would be unlawful. Thus an AMHP who agrees that a section 3 is appropriate and who is 22 Chapter 2 Civil admissions, guardianship and community treatment orders then prevented by a nearest relative objection from making such an application would need to apply to the county court for a displacement of the nearest relative and would not be able to fall back on a section 2 as an interim measure.

Authorising an approved clinician to be the patient’s responsible clinician; . maintaining detailed records relating to guardianship patients; . ensuring that the need to continue guardianship is reviewed in the last two months of each period of guardianship in accordance with the Act; and . discharging patients from guardianship as soon as it is no longer required. AMHPs may wish to check that their approving authority has covered all of these areas in their policy documents. Frequency of the use of guardianship The use of guardianship varies considerably in different areas.

The last case involved a patient who had been on section 17 leave for three months. Hospital attendance was limited to a four-weekly ward round and weekly sessions with a ward psychologist. The judge noted that it was: . . clear to me the RMO was engaged in a delicate balancing exercise by which she was, with as light a touch as she could, encouraging progress to discharge. Her purpose was to break the persistent historical cycle of admission, serious relapse and readmission. It may be that in the closing stages of the treatment in hospital her grasp on the claimant was gossamer thin, but to view that grasp as insignificant is, in my view, to misunderstand the evidence.

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