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Community confidence in Mental Health Tribunal must be maintained

27 Feb 2017

Community confidence in the Queensland Mental Health Review Tribunal is vital to ensuring effective oversight of decisions impacting on vulnerable Queenslanders.

The Queensland Mental Health Commission supports the urgent action of the Minister for Health to retrospectively ensure the validity of decisions taken by the Tribunal.

Mental Health Commissioner Dr Lesley Van Schoubroeck said that while inappropriate to discuss matters referred to the Queensland Crime and Corruption Commission, it is important to ensure that confidence in the Mental Health Review Tribunal is maintained.

“The Mental Health Review Tribunal along with community visitors, the Chief Psychiatrist and the Health Ombudsman provide important oversight mechanisms for some of the most vulnerable people within the mental health system,” Dr van Schoubroeck said.

“The Commission is pleased that the Mental Health Act 2016 which comes into effect in March this year includes additional supports such as Independent Patient Rights Advisers and as well as legal aid for some people appearing before the Tribunal.

“However we remain concerned that our recommendation to require Tribunal hearings to be recorded was not included and urge the Government to make provision for this to be done administratively.”

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