Axe falls on mental health commission

    The Mental Health Act Commission is to be abolished in the
    forthcoming mental health bill.

    Responsibility for the regulation of the care of people detained
    under the 1983 legislation will be passed to the Healthcare
    Commission, which replaced the Commission for Health Improvement in
    April.

    The change, announced last week, is part of the Department of
    Health’s drive to increase efficiency by reducing the number of its
    arm’s length public bodies from 38 to 20.

    Whether all the commissioners employed by the Mental Health Act
    Commission will transfer and retain the same freedoms and powers to
    visit and interview detained patients in private and consider both
    the lawfulness of detention and the overall quality of care is yet
    to be decided.

    Details are expected to be published in the autumn, perhaps
    alongside the revised version of the draft Mental Health Bill,
    which is due in September.

    The General Social Care Council, Commission for Social Care
    Inspection and National Treatment Agency all survived the DoH’s
    cull.

    GSCC chair Rodney Brooke said the council was delighted that the
    government decision would enable it to continue driving up
    standards.

    He said: “The 1.5 million people using social care every day are at
    the heart of our mission. It is important for them that the social
    care workforce is properly trained, checked and accountable for
    delivering high standards of care.”

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