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A human right to be detained? Mental healthcare after ‘Savage’ and ‘Rabone'

  • Mohammad Shaiyan Rahman (a1) and Nadya Wolferstan (a2)
Summary

The UK courts have recently considered the management of suicidal patients in the cases of Savage and Rabone. As a result of these judgments, the case law has extended significantly the responsibilities of mental healthcare providers. In this article we discuss the repercussions of these landmark decisions which are likely to have significant consequences for mental health service providers in the UK.

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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
Mohammad Shaiyan Rahman (mohammad.rahman2@nhs.net)
Footnotes
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Declaration of interest

M.S.R. is employed by the National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Homicide by People with Mental Illness (NCISH). NCISH had no role in the conception or preparation of this article. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the NCISH. N.W. acted as the legal counsel for the NHS mental health trust in Rabone v. Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust (2012). The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Hempsons (solicitors).

Footnotes
References
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1 Savage v South Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust [2008] UKHL 74.
2 Rabone and another v Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust [2012] UKSC 2.
3 Powell v United Kingdom (2000) 30 EHRR CD 362.
4 Mann, JJ, Apter, A, Bertolote, J, Beautrais, A, Currier, D, Haas, A, et al. Suicide prevention strategies. JAMA 2005; 294: 2064–74.
5 While, D, Bickley, H, Roscoe, A, Windfuhr, K, Rahman, S, Shaw, J, et al. Implementation of mental health service recommendations in England and Wales and suicide rates, 1997–2006: a cross-sectional and before-and-after observational study. Lancet 2012; 379: 1005–12.
6 Kapur, N. Evaluating risks. Adv Psychiatr Treat 2000; 6: 399406.
7 Rose, G, Khaw, T-H, Marmot, M. Rose's Strategy of Preventive Medicine. Oxford University Press, 2008.
8 Large, M, Sharma, S, Cannon, E, Ryan, C, Nielssen, O. Risk factors for suicide within a year of discharge from psychiatric hospital: a systematic meta-analysis. Aust NZ J Psychiatry 2011; 45: 619–28.
9 Large, M, Smith, G, Sharma, S, Nielssen, O, Singh, SP. Systematic review and meta-analysis of the clinical factors associated with the suicide of psychiatric in-patients. Acta Psychiatr Scand 2011; 124: 1829.
10 National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. Self-Harm (Longer Term Management) (CG133). NICE, 2011.
11 Department of Health, National Risk Management Programme. Best Practice in Managing Risk: Principles and Evidence for Best Practice in the Assessment and Management of Risk to Self and Others in Mental Health Services. Department of Health, 2007.
12 Hawley, CJ, Littlechild, B, Sivakumaran, T, Sender, H, Gale, TM, Wilson, KJ. Structure and content of risk assessment proformas in mental healthcare. J Ment Health 2006; 15: 437–48.
13 Hawley, CJ, Gale, TM, Sivakumaran, T, Littlechild, B. Risk assessment in mental health: staff attitudes and an estimate of time cost. J Ment Health 2010; 19: 8898.
14 Large, MM, Nielssen, OB. Probability and loss: two sides of the risk assessment coin. Psychiatrist 2011; 35: 413–8.
15 Lyons, D. New mental health legislation in Scotland. Adv Psychiatr Treat 2008; 14: 8997.
16 Department for Constitutional Affairs. Mental Capacity Act 2005 Code of Practice. TSO (The Stationery Office), 2007.
17 Owen, GS, Szmukler, G, Richardson, G, David, AS, Hayward, P, Rucker, J, et al. Mental capacity and psychiatric in-patients: implications for the new mental health law in England and Wales. Br J Psychiatry 2009; 195: 257–63.
18 E (as PR of the estate of M Deceased) v St George's NHS Trust, Wandsworth Teaching Primary Care Trust and South West London Mental Health Trust (2012) LTLPI 3/5/12.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 1758-3209
  • EISSN: 1758-3217
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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A human right to be detained? Mental healthcare after ‘Savage’ and ‘Rabone'

  • Mohammad Shaiyan Rahman (a1) and Nadya Wolferstan (a2)
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