Updated guidance for care homes during Covid-19 Official guidance for care homes during Covid-19 was updated on 2 September 2020. It provides information on a wide range of issues such as testing, care and isolation of residents with Covid-19 and states: ‘Duties and powers under the MCA still apply during this period. If care home…


The latest edition of the CQC’s insight report is available. It considers many different issues including DoLS and the Mental Health Act. It can be download from this link 20200715 COVID IV Insight number 3 slides final


The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights (JCHR) is currently holding an inquiry into the UK Government’s response to Covid-19. This inquiry is looking at how people’s human rights may have been affected. The British Institute of Human Rights is running a survey to gather peoples views to present to the committee. For those working in social…


A new service was launched recently by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG). The government website explains that this will provide a faster service: ‘…the current paper-based process can take weeks, as documents need to be requested and confirmed between organisations and individuals, before being posted as physical copies. The new system will allow those acting…



Law firm Rook Irwin Sweeney (RIS) have sent a letter before action to Matt Hancock to challenge the lack of new guidance for people in supported living. According to RIS, the previous guidance was withdrawn on the 13th May and since then the Department of Health and Social Care have said it is under development. RIS note…



Barrister and Edge trainer, Dr Oliver Lewis was interviewed in this national newspaper article on care home deaths during the pandemic. The article focuses in particular on cases in which families wanted their relative to be discharged. Oliver delivers regular training on the Court of Protection with Edge and is also running this very popular course entitled Maintaining Human Rights in…


The government website was updated on 24th June with four further determinations illustrating how the DHSC resolve disputes when two or more local authorities cannot agree responsibility for meeting a person’s eligible needs.


This guidance first published by the government on 2nd April was updated on 19th June. The government website explains that the “…document has been updated throughout in line with the care homes support package announced on 15 May and the latest advice on testing, and infection prevention and control. The changes are set out in full in the…


Mental capacity to engage in sexual relations For any staff involved in assessing mental capacity to engage in sexual relations, the Court of Appeal has recently released a significant judgment concerning the information a person needs to understand as part of the assessment. The case A Local Authority v JB [2020] EWCA Civ 735 can…


The Ombudsman has found fault with a local authority over the delay in assessing a man with a learning disability kept on a mental health hospital. The report states: ‘There was undoubtedly fault in respect of DoLS in this case. The Council took much too long to assess Y and put in place the authority…


This report entitled Human Rights and the Government’s response to COVID-19: the detention of young people who are autistic and/or have learning disabilities is now available. The Committee heard evidence from parents of young people who are autistic and/or have a learning disability and are currently detained under the Mental Health Act 1983. The Committee also heard from the…



COVID-19 Related Resources for Health & Social Care Professionals Mental Health Act MHCS Stakeholder Update Covid-19 19 March 2020 Royal College of Psychiatrists COVID-19 Guidance for Clinicians Pilot Practice Direction: Health, Education and Social Care of the First Tier Tribunal (Mental Health)- A new way for mental health tribunals to operate which started on 23rd…


  The Mental Health Review Tribunal ( MHRT) for Wales issued new Practice Direction for statements and reports for MHRTs in Wales. These can be found on www.mentalhealthreviewtribunal.gov.wales and are also attached here MHRT Practice Direction Oct 2019. Those working in Wales should familiarise themselves with the content of these when preparing reports for MHRT…


We have produced a new guidance sheet on the MCA that attempts to answer a not uncommon question by health and social care staff – Why should I use the MCA? What difference does it make? The guidance provides 9 detailed and evidence based reasons for using the Act in practice. It is free to…



NHS England have published their annual Safeguarding report. It can be downloaded from this NHSE safeguarding-annual-update-2018-19 – April 2019 In relation to the Liberty Protection Safeguards (replacing DoLS) it notes: ‘Another major development is the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill, which is about to become legislation, and will have a significant impact on safeguarding and mental health…


The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman have made a finding of ‘fault causing injustice’ against Staffordshire County Council for how they handled their DoLS applications. The Ombudsman found: ‘Since May 2016 the Council unlawfully decided not to carry out assessments of low and medium priority Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) applications and significantly delayed…



The document below provides guidance from HM Prison & Probation Service- Mental Health Casework Section, on conditional discharge conditions and deprivation of liberty post MM DoL_guidance_v1_Jan2019



The House of Lords are due to continue their debate on the Liberty Protection Safeguards (Report Stage) with two dates in mid and late November. These are potentially the last dates for any significant changes to the Bill. Dr Lucy Series from Cardiff University has produced a very helpful briefing on the major current issues…



The charity Compassion in Dying has looked into patient experience when discussing advance care planning with their GP. Compassion in Dying say the report  “…reveals mismatch between Clinical Commissioning Group policies and the reality faced by patients. Patients report doctors being ill-equipped to support them to plan ahead for their future care and treatment.”.  You…




The NHS Improvement agency has published new standards of care for NHS Trusts providing learning disability services. It states: ‘Several inquiries and investigations have found that some NHS trusts and foundation trusts are failing to adequately respect and protect people’s rights, with devastating consequences for them and their families..With system partners we have developed four…



Have DoLS BIA Assessments had a positive impact on people? An emphatic ‘yes’ was the answer according to our survey in 2016. Following the recent publication of a bill to replace DoLS with the Liberty Protection Safeguards, we note that the role of the Best Interests Assessor (to be renamed Approved Mental Capacity Professional) has…


The charity Mind are looking for people on Community Treatment Orders (CTOs) with a condition attached stating where they should reside. As many of you will know, the decision of the Court of Appeal in PJ v Welsh Ministers [2017] EWCA Civ 194 has been met with some concern. Mind intend to use examples of patients that are…


The University of Lincoln is undertaking research in to mental capacity assessments and DoLS and would love your assistance if you are a DoLS professional. For more information and details about who can get involved please find below the research document prepared by the University of Lincoln. Interviews are taking place until the end of June.…


The annual report from the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme has been released. Based on 103 reviews of deaths, in 13% of cases the person’s health had been adversely affected by one or more of the following: •delays in care or treatment; •gaps in service provision; •organisational dysfunction; •or neglect or abuse.’ The failure to…


The British Institute of Human Rights has published this brief guide for practitioners which covers the key human rights considerations in relation to hospital discharge. Hospital_Discharge_Final_Low_Res  


It actually states: ‘Training needs to improve within NHS organisations about the factors that disadvantage Black and Asian minority ethnic groups, particularly those of Black African and Caribbean descent. This should support psychiatrists in reflecting on their own perspectives, behaviours and the role unconscious bias can have on the care they provide, as well as…




  Are you a DoLS assessors (BIA/MH Assessor) or DoLS Signatory? We are pleased to share news of research into mental capacity assessments being conducted for the purpose of DoLS authorisations, which you may be interested in contributing to. The research is being conducted by Lucy Bright and Jim Rogers at the University of Lincoln.…






In December a House of Commons committee issued a damning review of mental health care in prisons. It stated: “Record high numbers of self-inflicted deaths and incidents of self-harm in prisons are a damning indictment of the current state of the mental health of those in prison…” The report makes a series of recommendations which…


Changes to sections 135 & 136 of the Mental Health Act came into force on the 11th December. You can download our 2 page summary of the changes, integrating relevant parts of the newly published Dept of Health and Home Office guidance and the Regulations. Click on Read More to download. S135 & 136 brief summary…



Cornwall Council are undertaking a DoLS Time Study. Their DoLS team wishes to establish how much time it takes BIAs to complete their assessments and any time standards that they may have to work within. To take part (anonymously) in this simple survey, click here. Survey closes at 5pm, 21st August 2015.