Review of the Mental Health Act 2009

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Consultation has concluded. Thanks for your contributions.

How can our mental health laws best promote mental health and wellbeing reflecting modern rights-based practice?

What's being decided?

The Office of the Chief Psychiatrist is considering recommendations from an independent review of the Mental Health Act 2009 undertaken by the SA Law Reform Institute (SALRI). Some issues raised by the review require further discussion.

The SALRI report recommended that the Act be amended to reflect a greater focus on the promotion of wellbeing and prevention strategies to help shift away from a crisis focussed approach to mental health. We are seeking feedback on what is important to include in the objects and guiding principles of the Act to reflect this.

We are also seeking your feedback on other areas of the Act such as:

  • how a person can be supported to make decisions when they have impaired decision-making capacity due to their illness
  • the wording of a Statement of Recognition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing
  • further safeguards for children and young people who are subject to treatment orders
  • 'care and control' powers for mental health clinicians and SA Police officers
  • making the requirements for community treatment orders clearer and how orders are reviewed
  • how restrictive practices are authorised when required for the delivery of Electro-Convulsive Therapy (ECT)
  • legal representation at SA Civil and Administrative Tribunals (SACAT)
  • the role of the Mental Health Commissioner.

Background

The Mental Health Act 2009 (MHA) aims to ensure that people with severe mental illness receive a comprehensive range of services to facilitate their recovery and the resumption of their participation in and contribution to community life.

The operation of the Act must be reviewed every five years. In line with this requirement, SALRI at the University of Adelaide, has independently conducted a review and provided several recommendations and suggestions about:

  • specific statutory amendments to the Act
  • service provision, policy, and training commitments.

We welcome the opportunity to reflect on a further five years of operation of the Act, to align mental health legislation with contemporary mental health and human rights-based practice.

Get involved

Find out more:

Have your say by:

  • answering questions in our survey
  • registering for an upcoming online discussion listed on the Key Dates section.
  • emailing a submission to HealthOCP@sa.gov.au
  • posting your written submission to: Office of the Chief Psychiatrist, PO Box 287, Rundle Mall ADELAIDE SA 5000

What are the next steps?

We will use your feedback to inform the development of a draft Bill to make amendments to the Mental Health Act 2009. Changes to the Act will need to be agreed by Cabinet and both houses of Parliament.

How can our mental health laws best promote mental health and wellbeing reflecting modern rights-based practice?

What's being decided?

The Office of the Chief Psychiatrist is considering recommendations from an independent review of the Mental Health Act 2009 undertaken by the SA Law Reform Institute (SALRI). Some issues raised by the review require further discussion.

The SALRI report recommended that the Act be amended to reflect a greater focus on the promotion of wellbeing and prevention strategies to help shift away from a crisis focussed approach to mental health. We are seeking feedback on what is important to include in the objects and guiding principles of the Act to reflect this.

We are also seeking your feedback on other areas of the Act such as:

  • how a person can be supported to make decisions when they have impaired decision-making capacity due to their illness
  • the wording of a Statement of Recognition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Social and Emotional Wellbeing
  • further safeguards for children and young people who are subject to treatment orders
  • 'care and control' powers for mental health clinicians and SA Police officers
  • making the requirements for community treatment orders clearer and how orders are reviewed
  • how restrictive practices are authorised when required for the delivery of Electro-Convulsive Therapy (ECT)
  • legal representation at SA Civil and Administrative Tribunals (SACAT)
  • the role of the Mental Health Commissioner.

Background

The Mental Health Act 2009 (MHA) aims to ensure that people with severe mental illness receive a comprehensive range of services to facilitate their recovery and the resumption of their participation in and contribution to community life.

The operation of the Act must be reviewed every five years. In line with this requirement, SALRI at the University of Adelaide, has independently conducted a review and provided several recommendations and suggestions about:

  • specific statutory amendments to the Act
  • service provision, policy, and training commitments.

We welcome the opportunity to reflect on a further five years of operation of the Act, to align mental health legislation with contemporary mental health and human rights-based practice.

Get involved

Find out more:

Have your say by:

  • answering questions in our survey
  • registering for an upcoming online discussion listed on the Key Dates section.
  • emailing a submission to HealthOCP@sa.gov.au
  • posting your written submission to: Office of the Chief Psychiatrist, PO Box 287, Rundle Mall ADELAIDE SA 5000

What are the next steps?

We will use your feedback to inform the development of a draft Bill to make amendments to the Mental Health Act 2009. Changes to the Act will need to be agreed by Cabinet and both houses of Parliament.

  • Please find below some questions on aspects of the Mental Health Act we are seeking feedback on. You can answer as many questions as you prefer. 

    Consultation has concluded. Thanks for your contributions.

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