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Consultant child and adolescent psychiatrists' knowledge of and attitude to the use of legislation concerning young people with psychiatric disorder

  • Alex Mears (a1), Richard White (a2) and Paul Lelliott (a3)
Abstract
Aims and Method

This study aimed to examine in-patient child and adolescent consultant psychiatrists' knowledge of and attitude to the Mental Health Act 1983 (MHA), the Children Act 1989 and issues around consent. A questionnaire form was sent to all in-patient consultants in England and Wales.

Results

The consultants who responded (n=51, 67%) reported a desire for more training in legal issues. Knowledge of the MHA was better than for the Children Act 1989; those who used the MHA at least once every 6 months scored more correct answers to questions about the MHA than did those who used it less frequently or never.

Clinical Implications

Although the study indicates specific gaps in knowledge, the main message is that training should consider the legal framework as a whole, with an emphasis on practical issues about its application in the in-patient setting.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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Mears, A. & Worrall, A. (2001) A survey of psychiatrists' views of the use of the Children Act and the Mental Health Act in children and adolescents with mental health problems. Psychiatric Bulletin, 25, 304.
O'Herlihy, A., Worrall, A., Banerjee, S., et al (2001) National In-patient Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Study. London: Department of Health.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Consultant child and adolescent psychiatrists' knowledge of and attitude to the use of legislation concerning young people with psychiatric disorder

  • Alex Mears (a1), Richard White (a2) and Paul Lelliott (a3)
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