The Mental Health Act 2014 establishes a supported decision-making model that will enable and support compulsory patients to make or participate in decisions about their treatment and determine their individual path to recovery. Legal mechanisms in the Act that enable supported decision making include a presumption of capacity, advance statements, nominated persons and the right to seek a second psychiatric opinion.
These mechanisms will promote best practice and facilitate optimal communication between practitioners and people with mental illness and their families and carers, leading to improved treatment outcomes and recovery. The Act also provides a legislative framework that supports the ongoing development of recovery-oriented practice in the public mental health service system.
Mental health principles
The mental health principles guide the provision of mental health services.
An advance statement expresses a person’s treatment preferences if they need compulsory treatment.
Carers and families
The Act recognises the role of carers and other support people in a person’s assessment, treatment and recovery.
The informed consent of a person must be sought before treatment or medical treatment is given to a person under the Mental Health Act 2014.
A nominated person supports a person who needs compulsory mental health treatment.
Presumption of capacity
Capacity is the ability to give informed consent to a particular treatment at a particular time.
Second psychiatric opinions
Patients can get a second psychiatric opinion to help understand and make decisions about treatment.
Reviewed 28 May 2015