When Can a Patient Sue for Negligence and Wrongful Detention Under the Mental Health Act?
Lancet. 1985 Oct 5; 2(8458): 789-790.
Section 139 of Great Britain's 1983 Mental Health Act makes the courts more accessible to patients with complaints regarding alleged negligence and wrongful detention than did the 1959 Act. The test for whether criminal proceedings can be brought is now whether the "patient's complaint appears to merit fuller investigation." The 1983 legislation also removes the legal immunity of the Secretary of State and the health authorities. Brahams explains that patients dissatisfied with the British law can appeal to the European Court in Strasbourg under Articles 5 and 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which guarantee personal liberty and a fair trial. (KIE abstract)
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Brahams, Diana (1983-08-20)An account is presented of a legal action in which two physicians were charged with negligence and failure to use reasonable care in involuntarily committing a patient without examining him as required by Britain's 1959 ...