Draft Mental Health Bill – the Parliamentary scrutiny committee reports (and walkthrough)

The Joint Committee on the Draft Mental Health Bill has today (19 January 2023) published its pre-legislative scrutiny report on the draft Bill.  It is an extensive and detailed report, concluding thus:

During this inquiry we have heard concerns about how the reforms proposed in the draft Bill will play out in practice. We have heard again and again about the importance of proper implementation, resourcing, access to community alternatives to hospital and the need to take account of possible unintended consequences. These concerns should not take away from the broadly positive response to the draft Bill or the sense of urgency about introducing some of its reforms. Our recommendations are intended to strengthen the draft Bill, to address some of those unintended consequences and to ensure transparency and accountability about implementation. If the Government is willing to strengthen the draft Bill in the ways we have suggested it can make an important and necessary contribution to addressing the problems that the Independent Review was established to consider. 

I have done a walkthrough of the conclusions and recommendations (complete with weird halo-effect towards the end thanks to the winter sun):

The draft Mental Health Bill is not altogether easy to read it across to the Mental Health Act 1983 as it currently stands to show the changes.   I have, therefore, created an entirely unofficial version of the MHA 1983 as if it were amended by the draft Mental Health Bill, available here.


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