Have recent changes in mental health legislation and policy provided any positive gains for service users in England and Wales?

  • Stephen Paul Swann

Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Philosophy


The purpose of this thesis is to critically review some of the recent changes in
mental health legislation and policy that have been implemented by New
Labour. It will begin by considering the background to today’s contemporary
mental health system from a historical context. The thesis will then consider
whether or not the new Mental Health Act 2007 has made any positive gains
in terms of rights for Patients and those that care for them? Have the needs of
all interested stakeholders been realised? And finally, is compulsory treatment
in the community a viable alternative to continued hospitalisation. The third
part of the thesis will re-evaluate the publics’ perception of the mentally ill by
considering the place of various actors that have contributed to what has
effectively become an urban mythology. The thesis will then consider the
position from a service users (patient’s) standpoint. The nature of the doctor
patient relationship and how it can impact upon consent to treatment. The
thesis will also reflect upon some service users experience of what it means to
be mentally ill and how this relates to their recovery. The final part of the
thesis will consider recent changes in proposals to a new strategy to replace
the existing/previous framework and the economic justification for what could
amount to a paradigm shift in policy
Date of Award2011
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Aberystwyth University
SupervisorNaomi Salmon (Supervisor) & Glenys Williams (Supervisor)


  • mental health laws
  • Great Britain

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