Narratives of reform : The Mental Health Act (MHA) in England and Wales from the 1983 MHA to the Wessley Review (2018)

Cummins, ID ORCID: 2020, 'Narratives of reform : The Mental Health Act (MHA) in England and Wales from the 1983 MHA to the Wessley Review (2018)' , Journal of Adult Protection, 22 (4) , pp. 217-226.

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Access Information: This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact


Purpose This paper examines reform of mental health legislation in England and Wales. It covers the period from the introduction of the 1983 MHA to the proposed reforms out-lined in the Wessley Review that was published in December, 2018. Design/methodology/approach This is a literature based project Findings Reform of mental health legislation reflects two potentially conflicting strands. One is the state’s power to incarcerate the “mad”, the other is the move to protect the civil rights of those who are subject to such legislation. The failures to development ade-quately funded community based mental health services and a series of Inquiries in the 1990s led to the introduction of Community Treatment Orders in the 2007 reform of the MHA. Research limitations/implications The development of mental health policy has seen a shift towards more coercive approaches in mental health. Practical implications The successful reform of the MHA can only be accomplished along-side investment in community mental health services Originality/value The paper highlights the tensions between the factors that contribute to mental health legislation reform

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Adult Protection
Publisher: Emerald
ISSN: 1466-8203
Related URLs:
Depositing User: ID Cummins
Date Deposited: 19 Jun 2020 13:41
Last Modified: 28 Aug 2021 12:05

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