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Do we know the legal framework in child and adolescent mental health services? Survey of specialist registrars

  • Faeza Khan (a1), Faria Khan (a2), Latha Hackett (a3) and Kenneth Ross (a4)
Abstract
Aims and Method

This survey was conducted as part of the baseline assessment of trainees' needs concerning the legal aspects of child care and to evaluate the implications for the regional academic programme. A group of specialist registrars in child and adolescent psychiatry in the North Western Deanery completed a questionnaire-based survey.

Results

None of the specialist registrars had experience in forensic child and adolescent psychiatry. With regard to the legislation: 13 (100%) mentioned the Mental Health Act 1983; 12 (92.3%) the Children Act 1989; 7 (53.8%) the Human Rights Act 1998. of those surveyed, 13 (100%) were aware of parental responsibility; 10 (76.9%) identified the Children Act as being less stigmatising as compared to the Mental Health Act. Five (38.4%) had written court reports, and eight (61.5%) felt fairly confident after the 1-day training course. Overall interest in becoming an expert witness was 69.2% (n=9).

Clinical Implications

Deficits in knowledge about the legal framework, limited experience in forensic placements and lack of interest in becoming an expert witness need to be further explored.

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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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1 Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Specialist Advisory Subcommittee. A Higher Specialist Training Committee Advisory Paper. Royal College of Psychiatrists, 1999.
2 Royal College of Psychiatrists. Higher Specialist Training Handbook (Occasional Paper OP43). Royal College of Psychiatrists, 1998.
3 Bhugra, D. Psychiatric Training: the Next Steps. Royal College of Psychiatrists, 2005 (http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/pdf/psychiatrain_sept05.pdf).
4 Mears, A, Worrall, A. 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. Psychiatr Bull 2001; 25: 304–6.
5 Specialist Training Sub-Committee, North Western Deanery. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Legal Aspect Training Report 2006. STSC, 2006.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Do we know the legal framework in child and adolescent mental health services? Survey of specialist registrars

  • Faeza Khan (a1), Faria Khan (a2), Latha Hackett (a3) and Kenneth Ross (a4)
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