MHACA has recently been engaged in the Review of the NT Mental Health and Related Services Act. The review is much needed and an opportunity for significant change.
MHACA has supported the community consultation process as well as making sure the voices of MHACA participants, many who have had direct experiences with the Act, are heard. MHACA is a member of the Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition, the peak body of the community managed mental health sector in the NT, and supported their submission which can be found here.
MHACA’s submission strongly supports including principles of recovery into the Act, and for the Act to reflect a human rights perspective and an emphasis on person-centred and culturally and trauma informed care.
The strongest message from MHACA participants is highlighting the often poor, and sometimes traumatising experiences they have encountered through their attempts to seek assistance, admission and treatment in mental health wards and experiences with community based clinical mental health care. Many of these issues relate to the quality of their interactions with health professionals which may not be directly influenced by the Act.
Nevertheless, MHACA believes that the Act has an important role in reinforcing key principles in the way supports are delivered, and in particular the emphasis on forming a respectful relationship where the informed consent of the patient is at the forefront of all treatment conversations.
You can read the full MHACA submission here