Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Vote Labour And You Vote For Mental Health Discrimination In Patient Choice

Over 10 Years of Labour has brought disability discrimination to a new focus in mental health . The rest of the population have got to use legal Patient Choice mechanisms for choices of treatments . From April 2009 you have been able to go to your G.P. with a physical problem and have it referred to a choice of consultant and then on to a choice of secondary provider (elective care) ........

In mental health if you are Sectionable (1983 Act) and under crisis you will get no choice . You might expect that.

However if you are non acute (not on a section ) but have mental health problems you will not get a choice of consultant through your G.P. who might then under equality of patient opportunity indicate a choice of secondary care provision, like a therapy supply, for say, Personality Disorder and damaged personality problems .. That's just one realistic example of possible Patient Choice ..

The Dept Of Health are currently handing out misleading information about mental health patient pathways and care via a G.P. in order to obfuscate issues surrounding equality of patient choice .

They stated in a response to an enquiry passed on to UserWatch :

"Thank you for your emails of 18 and 22 February to the Department of Health about mental health and choice. I have been asked to reply.

I note your concerns about this policy and have shared your further comments with our mental health and patient choice teams. The policy teams feel there is little to add to information provided in previous correspondence from the Department to which you refer in your email.

To reiterate, the legal right to choice applies only to referrals for first outpatient consultant-led appointments for elective care. Most mental health treatments are not consultant-led, but take place mainly in primary care or community settings: that is, mostly outside of hospital inpatient or outpatient settings. These are typically delivered by GPs, nurses or clinical psychologists. Even most hospital-based mental health treatment would not be consultant-led, so would be outside of the remit of choice.

This information is still correct. Beyond that, with regard to the current policy and future developments, I can only assure you that officials are continuing to look into options for extending choice to mental health service users.

I hope this reply is helpful.

Yours sincerely,

Christopher Bird
Customer Service Centre
Department of Health"

In fact this Dept of Health originated text is totally misleading. The non acute mental health patient pathway even at this point in time can very easily go through a G.P. then a referred Consultant and even onto a secondary care provision such as a psychological talking therapy for mental health issues .. There could be choices of where to go too but clearly the DOH is guiding Primary Care Trusts etc , now to circumvent equality of opportunity to important service provisions matched and shaped by equal rights to Patient Choice ..

Figure out for yourself why MIND and Rethink are not up in arms about this . After all they are now paid provisioners and are like another arm of the NHS State .. Labour along with their new "User Elites" cropping up in "user-involvement" circles and frothy promotional jobs , create stigma through making mental health patients second class or non-class zeroes, with no choices of provisions . How very happy happy seem the elite trance dancers of Users In Wonderland ......


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