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E-learning package on the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for junior doctors and medical students

  • Zena Schofield (a1), Ben di Mambro (a1) and Chris Schofield (a1)
Abstract
Aims and method

The assessment of capacity is integral to all areas of medical practice; however, research has shown that doctors in many specialties have inadequate knowledge about both the Mental Capacity Act and the Mental Health Act. In this study, 39 trainee doctors and 49 fourth-year medical students completed an e-learning package, which included a pre- and post-evaluation of knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act and confidence in the use of this act.

Results

In comparison to pre-intervention scores, trainee doctors and students displayed a statistically significant improvement in knowledge and subjective confidence.

Clinical implications

The e-learning package is an effective educational tool for improving knowledge about the Mental Capacity Act for trainee doctors and could be included as part of induction training for all foundation doctors as well as being considered for use in the induction programme of other trainee doctors. It is an effective tool for educating clinical medical students about the Mental Capacity Act.

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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.
Corresponding author
Zena Schofield (zenaschofield@doctors.org.uk)
Footnotes
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Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes
References
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1 General Medical Council. Consent: Patients and Doctors Making Decisions Together. GMC, 2008.
2 Schofield, C. Mental Capacity Act 2005 – what do doctors know? Med Sci Law 2008; 48: 113–6.
3 General Medical Council. Outcome 2: the doctor as a practitioner. In Tomorrow's Doctors: para 13. GMC, 2009.
4 Schofield, C. Mental health law training should be mandatory for all doctors. Commentary on … Knowledge of mental health legislation in junior doctors training in psychiatry. Psychiatrist 2011; 35: 466–8.
5 Chumley-Jones, H, Dobbie, A, Alford, CL. Web-based learning: sound educational method or hype? A review of the evaluation literature. Acad Med 2002; 77:s8693.
6 Ruiz, J, Mintzer, MJ, Leipzig, RM. The impact of e-learning in medical education. Acad Med 2006; 81: 207–12.
7 Hadley, J, Kulier, R, Zamora, J, Coppus, SF, Weinbrenner, S, Meyerrose, B, et al. Effectiveness of an e-learning course in evidence-based medicine for foundation (internship) training. J R Soc Med 2010; 103: 288–94.
8 Hare, EE. E-learning for psychiatrists. Psychiatrist 2009; 33: 81–3.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 1758-3209
  • EISSN: 1758-3217
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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E-learning package on the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for junior doctors and medical students

  • Zena Schofield (a1), Ben di Mambro (a1) and Chris Schofield (a1)
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