Date lodged: 11 October 2017
To ask the Scottish Government what action it will take in response to new figures published by the Mental Welfare Commission, which show that compulsory mental health treatment is at a 15-year high, with a 8.2% increase in 2016-17 compared with the previous year.
Answered by: Maureen Watt 26 October 2017
Our mental health law is based on rights and principles and offers protection for patients where compulsory treatment is necessary. Any increase in compulsory treatments may represent the effects of more people coming forward for treatment and increased awareness and response to mental ill health. It’s also important to note that the largest proportion of people subject to compulsion are for short term orders rather than long term orders. We will continue to work with the Mental Welfare Commission and stakeholders both to ensure these orders are correctly used and to promote patients rights more generally. Patient rights are a key part of our legislation and the new Mental Health Strategy.
The Scottish Government is considering how best to use data in mental health and this includes the important information which the Mental Welfare Commission provide about the use of compulsion.