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Mental Health Law: Policy and Practice

Mental Health Law: Policy and Practice (4th edn)

Peter Bartlett and Ralph Sandland
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date: 23 May 2024

p. 1013. Community Carelocked

p. 1013. Community Carelocked

  • Peter BartlettPeter BartlettNottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust Professor of Mental Health Law, University of Nottingham
  •  and Ralph SandlandRalph SandlandAssociate Professor in Law, University of Nottingham


This chapter examines the delivery of community care services. It discusses services for mentally disordered persons; the entitlement, nature, and scope of the duties owed under the National Health Service and Community Care Act (NHSCCA 1990); alternative mechanisms for securing services; and the use of personal budgets and direct payments. The chapter argues that most of the time, local social service authorities and National Health Service bodies do cooperate reasonably well in the delivery of community care services, particularly for service users with learning disabilities. The draft the Care and Support Bill holds the potential to radically simplify the legal framework in which community care services are delivered, making the system more transparent and intelligible to both users and professionals. The increased use of personal budgets and direct payments could empower service users in a way that has not been possible in the past.

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