Big issue: Mental health law
x home x
x courses
x conferences
x archive/big issues
x comment
x books - new & used
x members forum
x contact us
x advertise your jobs, courses & conferences


Oct 18: Landmark Broadmoor patient loses appeal to be released from detention - Albert Haines, who refuses to have psychiatric treatment, should not be discharged from his mental health section, tribunal panel decides

Sept 29: Landmark Broadmoor patient "dreams" of discharge from detention - but insists he will not have therapy - Albert Haines, the first psychiatric patient to appear in public in appeal against detention admits he does not want to engage with professionals

Sept 23: Broadmoor patient ?determined to get heard? in landmark case - "I do not have a mental illness and I'm not a danger to anyone," says Albert Haines, due to be the first psychiatric patient to have appeal against 25 years of detention heard in public.

July 11: Man who "threatened" NHS psychological therapist wins 5k in out-of-court libel settlement - charity worker said
decision shows that mental health professionals who make defamatory accusations against patients or their relatives in written correspondence are ?not above the law?. By Adam James.

March 11: Mental health tribunal of Broadmoor patient to be heard in public - European law requires person with mental health problems to have same right of access to public hearing as non-disabled person, say judges


Sept 30: Schizophrenia patient, 69, forced to have hysterectomy - High Court rules against pensioner said to believe life-threatening condition is normal and does not require treatment.

March 15: Compulsory ECT is wrong - Psychiatry has a history of using damaging interventions, so it's time to end the magical faith in electroconvulsive therapy, argues psychiatrist Pat Bracken.

Jan 22: Psychiatric unit defends seclusion after complaint - Nottinghamshire NHS trust publicly states isolation used "as last resort" after patient kept in one room for past eight weeks.

Jan 15: "Allow people with mental health problems to be jurors" - campaigners step up fight after claiming government inaction


Nov 6: Surge in mental health treatment by force - threat of compulsion now "hangs heavy" over patients, says Mind chief executive Paul Farmer.

Sept 14: Objections over government plans for just one psychiatrist to enforce mental health detention - "To take away just about all the safeguards seems a serious step which removes protections for patients and professionals" says Tony Zigmond of Royal College of Psychiatrists.

July 17: Mental health courts launched (Justice Secretary Jack Straw, left,at launch of new courts)

July 1: Psychiatric patient gets 400,000 compensation after failed suicide bid - judge said patient had experienced "undue suffering" after being insufficiently monitored by the staff in hospital

June 15: Managing director wins landmark depression case - council loses after claiming Christine Laird withheld her diagnosis in a job application.


Oct 23: Use of powers to detain people under mental health law increased by fifth - detentions for mental disorders in England increased by 20% from 1996 to 2006

Aug 8: Homicides by mentally ill at record low, states research - new study likely to call into question how best to assess number of killings attributable to mental ill health

July 31: Government to consider repealing "discriminatory" mental health law - ministers could overturn law from 16th century which bars anyone detained in psychiatric hospital from standing for parliament

May 21: Almost all psychiatric patients oppose smoking ban on units, study claims - but patients at Rampton, pictured left, lose test case for right to continue smoking. Judges ruled ban was justified for "health and security" reasons.

March 20: Psychiatric patients launch test case for right to smoke while detained - patients could be only group of people banned from smoking "in the privacy of their own home", judges told

Jan 10: Private psychiatric units increasingly used to detain patients - new figures show 24 per cent increase of detentions in independent hospitals


Oct 4: New law to protect most vulnerable mentally ill comes into force - Mental Capacity Act "gives people with mental health problems more control over their lives," says Paul Farmer of Mind

July 4: Right to advocate for detained psychiatric patients - new measure welcomed as mental health bill, after five years in the making, is passed in parliament

June 28: Psychologists, nurses and occupational therapists to have new psychiatric detention powers - "it will be possible for clinicians to use this power in the best interest of clients,? says Peter Kinderman, left

May 30: Rampton patient launches human rights test case over smoking ban - Terrence Grimwood accuses hospital of violating his right to respect for his private and home life

May 24: Five professional organisations leave Mental Health Alliance - psychologists, mental health nurses and occupational therapists express frustration at how the alliance has represented them

May 17: Leading psychiatrist turns down OBE in protest at "deeply flawed" mental health bill - Suman Fernando fears planned new law could exacerbate discimination of black people

March 14: Treating psychiatric patients under compulsion in community has no clinical benefit, says report - there is no evidence for decreased hospital readmission, improved medication compliance or patient quality of life, states Institute of Psychiatry international review of CTOs.

Feb 28: Peers defeat government over plans to extend compulsory plans of treatment over mentally ill - controversial bill now due to go before MPs after Easter

Jan 25: Mental health ?tsar? accused of encouraging staff to unlawfully coerce patients for treatment - row of words erupts between chief executive of Mental Health Act Commission and Prof Louis Appleby

Jan 25: Clinical psychologists should refuse to detain patients, academic urges - new government law means psychologists will be required to implement ?social control?, argues David Harper

Jan 12: Government set to win bid to extend compulsion powers over mentally ill, says MP
- "I do not think there will be a major Labour rebellion," says Lynne Jones of group of MPs with previous "misgivings? over mental health bill.


Mental health comment
Dec 12: CTOs do not work...and that's according to the evidence base -
Community treatment orders will help protect the public from mentally people who kill, says the government. But what of the evidence for such a claim?

Dec 1: Government presses ahead to force some psychiatric patients to take medication in community - plans in new mental health bill

March 23: Government drops key proposals of draft mental health bill - new "streamlined? bill will be an amendment to the present mental health act, says mental health minister Rosie Winterton

March 1: Setback for mental health bill - backbench opposition could force government defeat

Do you have something important to say? Send us your comment of 800 words. Contact details here

New and second-hand books:

Bentall, Richard
Bi-polar/manic depression
Breggin, Peter
Clinical psychology
Cognitive behavioural therapy
Clare, Anthony
Eating disorder
Freud, Sigmund
Hearing Voices
History of psychiatry
Jung, Carl
Laing, R.D.
Mental health
Mental health/psychiatric nursing
Philosophy of psychiatry
Psychiatric medication
Psychology textbooks
Rogers, Carl
Rowe, Dorothy