Mental Health Commission

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Rules Governing the use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy

Version 3 of the Rules Governing the Use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy was published in February 2016. Following implementation of the Mental Health (Amendment) Act 2015, Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) can only be administered to an involuntary patient without consent where it has been determined that the patient is unable to consent to the treatment.

All references to the administration of treatment, where a patient is ‘unwilling’ to consent, have been removed from the Rules Governing the Use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy. The Rules have been updated to align with best international practice.

In a number of areas, the Rules have been amended to remove highly specified requirements and instead require approved centres to accord with best international practice. The Rules include a new section entitled ‘Resources’, which sets out a non-exhaustive list of international bodies and resources which are considered by the Mental Health Commission to offer guidance on what is ‘best international practice’. There have also been minor formatting and numbering changes to the Rules, as well as the deletion of redundant or repeated clauses.

Rules Governing the Use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy - Version 3

Revised - Rules Governing the Use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy

Publication date: 10 February 2016

Effective date: 15 February 2016



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