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RESOLVED that the Minutes of the meeting held on 18 January 2018 are correctly recorded and that they be signed by the Chairman.
(1) The Assistant Director Mental Health gave a presentation. The slides are contained within the electronic agenda papers on the KCC website.
(2) The Assistant Director Mental Health said that the Mental Health Guardianship Act 1983 (amended in 2007) was currently under review. It currently applied to people aged 16 and above who suffered from a mental disorder of a nature or degree warranting their reception into Guardianship and it was necessary in the interests of the welfare of the patients or the protection of other persons. It applied to people with a mental health illness, including dementia. A diagnosis of learning disability was not sufficient and needed to be associated with “abnormally aggressive or seriously irresponsible conduct.” The Act enabled service users to receive care in the community where it could not be provided without the use of compulsory powers. An application for Guardianship was made by an Approved Mental Health Professional (AMHP) based on 2 medical recommendations. Once made, the application was received by KCC and entered into the Guardianship Register.
(3) The Assistant Director Mental Health continued that the Guardian could require the person subject to Guardianship to live in a certain place; attend medical treatment, occupation, education or training; and allow access by a medical practitioner or other professional. The Local Social Services Authority was usually appointed as the Guardian, but it could appoint someone else. An application for Guardianship could not proceed when the person identified as the nearest relative objected. A Guardianship Order had to be reviewed regularly and renewed every 6 months and then yearly from the date on which the original Order was accepted.
(4) The Assistant Director Mental Health then said that KCC had the responsibility to receive a person into guardianship; to hold a register and provide a bi-annual report to the DoH detailing the numbers of applications and renewals. She added that the 2007 amendments to the Mental Health Act had introduced the requirement for elected members to “audit the effectiveness of receipt and scrutiny of documents and to approve discharges from Guardianship.”
(5) The Regulation Committee’s Terms of Reference included the function to “discharge persons who are subject to Guardianship, pursuant to Section 23 of the Mental Health Act 1983 on the recommendation of the Director of Disabled Children, Adults Learning Disability and Mental Health. This function was delegated to a Sub-Committee of at least three Members. One of these should be a Member of the Regulation Committee and the others, Members of the Adult Social Care Cabinet Committee.
(6) The Assistant Director Mental Health said that when considering whether to discharge the Sub- Committee should satisfy itself on whether the grounds for continued Guardianship were met and should follow the MHA ‘s Code of Practice and guiding principles. These were:
The Purpose Principle;
The Least restriction Principle;
The Respect Principle;
The Participation Principle; and
The Effectiveness, Efficiency and Equity Principle.
(7) The Assistant Director Mental Health broke down the cost of a Guardianship Order over two years. ... view the full minutes text for item 2.