of three main parties have mental health policies in election manifestos
of the three main political parties have drawn up specific mental
health policies in their election manifestos.
is despite the Labour government's draft mental health bill sparking
controversy and widespread media coverage.
Royal College of Psychiatrists has, nevertheless, drawn up a list
of 10 mental health policy questions for people to put to their
parliamentary candidates ahead of the May 5 general election.
include questions on how their party is combating the stigma of
people having mental health problems, how their party is reducing
disability discrimination for people with mental health problems,
and how their party would push mental health up the political agenda.
generic health policy the three main parties - as well as the Scottish
National Party - are battling it out on issues of hospital cleanliness,
patient choice, spending and waiting lists.
parties accept spending across all health services - and by implication
mental health services - must grow but they disagree about central
control and the private sector.
is pressing on with its plans to reform the 1983 mental health act,
as outlined in a draft mental health bill. They say new mental health
law is needed to better protect the public from violent people with
mental health problems.
the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats are critical of many aspects
of the bill they have also stated that they would bring in a new
mental health act
a Conservative mental health summit in 2003 the shadow health secretary
Dr Liam Fox said that he believes too many people diagnosed with
mental illness are being treated inappropriately in the community.
said the care in the community policy - introduced by the Tories
- has gone too far and is a threat to patients and the public.
Fox said: "Care in the community has been discredited in the
public mind by a series of crimes committed by the mentally ill
who had fallen between the gaps or come off their medication.
"The pendulum has swung too far and too fast.
need a new balance to be struck which ensures the most appropriate
treatment and environment for patients - a balance where those that
need treatment in a hospital setting receive it and only those able
to cope in the community are placed there."
Liberal Democrats' shadow health secretary Paul Burstow has said
the draft mental health bill should be "sent back to the drawing
said last month: "A
new mental health act is desperately needed, but it must be a law
to protect and improve services for patients, not a means to demonise
those with mental health problems."
2005 election manifesto
2005 election manifesto
Democrats 2005 election manifesto
Scottish National Party 2005 election manifesto
Royal College of Psychiatrist's list of 10 questions to parliamentary
29, 2005: Government again under fire over plans to change mental
health law - parliamentary committee warns that planned legislation
would erode civil liberties
7, 2005:Government should rip up draft mental health bill plans,
doctors group urges - British Medical Association tells parliamentary
committee the bill is "unethical, and unworkable"
16, 2004: Draft mental health bill risks breaching rights of patients
and would be unworkable - parliamentary committee hears
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