expert group to advise government on planned mental health law announced
by Angela Hussain
government has announced who are the members of an expert group
to advise it on how to implement planned law outlined in the draft
mental health bill.
government wants the hand-picked advisory group to assist it in
developing a code of practice to support the implementation of the
draft bill - the biggest planned overhaul of mental health law since
1983 - has been fiercely criticised by campaigners as being "draconian"
and threatening to result in further compulsion which will drive
patients away from mental health services.
of the expert group's 20 members - Richard Brook, chief executive
of Mind - has been notably critical of the draft bill which is currently
subject to scrutiny by a parliamentary committee. This committee
is due to present its report by the end of March.
health minister Rosie Winterton said the advisory group - the Mental
Health Bill Implementation Advisory Group - will also act as a "channel
of communication" with the members' wider professional, charity
and service user networks.
Winterton said: "I am confident that this constructive engagement
will help achieve implementation of our proposed legislation in
a way that will lead to real improvements in the treatment, under
formal powers, of people with a mental disorder."
government has appointed Sandy Taylor, chief executive of County
Durham and Darlington Priority Services NHS Trust, as chair of the
Taylor said: "Implementation of the bill will require the development
of strong partnerships between a range of organisations and groups
at local and national level.
group will work to achieve this and make sure that mental health
services are properly prepared when the new Act comes into force."
bill is unlikely to become law until after the next election.
addition to Sandy Taylor, the members of the Mental
Health Bill Implementation Advisory Group are:
* Nigel Beail, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Barnsley Learning
Disabilities Service and University of Sheffield.
* Jed Boardman, Senior Lecturer in Social Psychiatry, Guy's, King's
& St Thomas' School of Medicine; Chair, General and Community
Faculty, Royal College Psychiatrists.
* Richard Brook, Chief Executive, Mind; member, Mental Health Taskforce.
* Jeremy Cooper, Southern Regional Chair, Mental Health Review Tribunal.
* Maggie Cork, Chief Executive, Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust;
Chair, National Mental Health Partnership.
* Sandra Crawford, Nurse, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust.
* Diane Duguid, Service Manager, Turning Point.
*Rosalind Hill, Social Worker, Adolescent Unit, Thorneywood Child
and Adolescent Mental Health Services, Nottingham; member, British
Association of Social Workers.
* Richard Jones, Consultant, Mental Health and Community Law, Morgan
Cole Solicitors; Hon. President, Institute of Mental Health Practitioners.
* Val Joseph, Carer.
* Nisar Khan, Awaaz Manchester; Equalites National and the Black
Mental Health Network.
* Christine Lewis, Carer, London Development Centre
Robert McLean, Head of Forensic Social Care, Mersey Care NHS Trust;
* Liz Main, Service user.
* John O'Grady, Consultant forensic psychiatrist, Knowle Hospital,
Hampshire Partnership NHS Trust; Chair, Forensic Faculty, Royal
College of Psychiatrists.
* Kamlesh Patel, Mental Health Act Commission, Director of the Department
of Health's Mental Health Black and Minority Ethnic Programme.
* His Honour Judge Derek Stanley.
* Jim Symington, Programme Director, NIMHE.
*Linda Van Den Hende, Director, Strategic Disability Team, Metropolitan
* Jayne Zito, Patron, Zito Trust
The government's revised draft mental health bill (pdf)
16, 2004: Draft mental health bill risks breaching rights of patients
and would be unworkable - parliamentary committee hears
9, 2004: Government publishes revised draft mental health bill
- but it is greeted with universal condemnation from bodies representing
mental health professionals and service users.
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