Consultant psychiatrist Dr Pat Bracken says his profession needs to change. He says psychiatrists still have huge powers – and responsibilities – under the terms of the Mental Health Act. A psychiatrist has the power to determine what treatment will be used, how it will be used and its duration.

There are many people who carry hurt and suffering from past experiences in asylums or psychiatric hospitals
The old granite and red-brick buildings are closing. But shutting the door on a culture which often ignored the voice of patients isn’t necessarily as easy.

“While many improvements have been made in recent years, the need for a more humane, person-focused service is still the consistent message from the many people we consult across the country,” says Orla Barry, director of the campaign group Mental Health Reform.

“Although many people have positive experiences of mental healthcare, we regularly hear about those who feel they cannot get their voice heard within mental health services and are not given the choices they should have over their treatment.” (Irish Times) >

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