Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Section 54 — Measures that may be authorised

Part of Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 – in the Scottish Parliament at 12:15 pm on 19th March 2003.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mary Scanlon Mary Scanlon Conservative 12:15 pm, 19th March 2003

I will certainly press amendment 114.

The point that I made is that if we are to reduce stigma, which is one of the principles of the bill, we must treat the users of mental health services with the respect and dignity that their experience accords them. Their views about their treatment should be taken into account fully. As I said, service users build up considerable expertise about the treatments that work and do not work for them.

I accept what the minister says about the fact that, under section 171, urgent medical treatment can be given to a patient but I noticed that she said that the matter was not about having additional safeguards but about the need to "have regard to" the patient's wishes. There is an awful lot of talk about having regard to things. To be honest, having regard to something could mean taking on board the patient's every wish or reading the patient's wishes then throwing them in the bin. I am not a lawyer, but I do not think that the phrase "have regard to" means much. If I were a service user, I would have to ask why I should bother writing an advance statement.