The function of the mental health review tribunal is defined in Part V of the Mental Health Act 1983. Together with statute and Common Law, it provides safeguards to those detained under the Act. The provisions of the Human Rights Act 1998 have strengthened these safeguards. The key articles in Schedule 1 of the Human Rights Act are 5(1)(e), relating to the lawful detention of persons of unsound mind; 5(4), providing that the lawfulness of such detention shall be decided speedily by a court; 6, providing for a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law; and 8, establishing the right to respect for a private and family life. The latter is relevant to disclosure, nearest relatives' rights, and treatment.
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