Athlone based Senator, Gabrielle McFadden has spoken out in support of the Mental Health Amendment Bill 2017, on the basis that it includes changes that fundamentally strengthen the rights of people when they are in hospital for mental health care.
Speaking in the Seanad during Mental Health Week, Senator McFadden welcomed the provisions of the Bill, especially those that give a say to patients in their own care.
“This Bill supports the right of inpatients to make decisions about their own treatment and starts from a basis that people should be presumed to have capacity to make decisions about their own welfare,” she said. “Rather than the clinician deciding what was in the ‘best interests’ of the client, this Bill focuses on the ‘will and preferences’ and the ‘beliefs and values’ of the person.
“People may feel vulnerable when they are experiencing ill health of any sort and treating them respectfully is a matter of common courtesy. But, more importantly, there is scientific evidence to demonstrate that a patient centred care model has been shown to contribute to improved outcomes for patients, better use of resources, decreased costs and increased satisfaction with care.
“I am supporting this Bill because the approach outlined in it promotes positive interaction with the patient. It promotes better treatment and outcomes. Most importantly, it promotes well-being because it clearly says ‘Your Voice Matters’.”