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Bournewood and Beyond

The House of Lords decision in the case of L v Bournewood Community and Mental Health Trust1 may have been met with a sigh of relief by professionals working in the mental health field2, but anyone expecting a return to the pre Court of Appeal position is likely to be disappointed

1 July 1998

Bournewood & Beyond

The House of Lord's decision in the case of L v Bournewood Community and Mental Health Trust1 may have been met with a sigh of relief by professionals working in the mental health field2, but anyone expecting a return to the pre-Court of Appeal position is likely to be disappointed.

Although the House of Lords has overruled the Court of Appeal by deciding that people who are incapable of giving consent to their admission to hospital can be admitted and cared for without using the Mental Health Act 1983 (`the Act') the judgement has reinforced the calls to provide safeguards for people admitted to hospital in such circumstances.

Background - Consequences of the Court of Appeal's Judgement

The case of L v Bournewood Community and Mental Health Trust concerned Mr L a 48 year old autistic man who was admitted to Bournewood Hospital after becoming agitated at the day centre h...

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