e of poor practice, and active resistance from some quarters, the court could also make clear that continued provision of medical treatment when it is not in someone’s best interests is an assault, and that clinicians will not be able to rely on the defence in s.5 of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 – meaning that there is a risk to them and to their organisations of claims for damages.
By Claire Martin, 17th June 2021 This hearing, on 6th and 7th May 2021 before HHJ Howells at Wrexham County and Family Court (COP 13575520 Re: B) was the second hearing I’ve observed concerning “David” – a 39-year-old man with a severe learning disability, poorly controlled epilepsy and congenital cerebral palsy with right-sided hemiplegia. At the previous hearing, onContinue reading “Chaos in court and incompetent decision-making: Visual monitoring Part 2”
Emma Heron and Olwen Cockell, 21st May 2021 Editorial Introduction (Celia Kitzinger) Two relative novices to the Court of Protection had their first experience of a hearing before Mr Justice Hayden on 20thMay 2021. They record their impressions here. I also observed this hearing (COP 1275114): a s.21A challenge on behalf of a man in his 40s withContinue reading “First Impressions of Hayden J in the Court of Protection”
One obviously concerning aspect of this case is that Mr B’s (possibly unlawful) deprivation of liberty has been going on for a long time. I’m not sure when he moved into the care home, or at what point he started objecting to living there, but proceedings challenging his detention began more than a year ago, in January 2020.
“KB could not comprehend that a baby was growing inside of her. As a result of her learning difficulties, she was unable to verbalise beyond an occasional yes/no and it was deemed that she would not be able to undergo a vaginal birth. In his judgment, Mr Justice Poole said that the evidence shows that KB’s lack of understanding is “profound”
A hearing before Mr Justice Poole (COP 13551368) listed for three days (26-28 October 2020) was adjourned, only part-heard, because of inadequate reports from the expert witness. The expert witness, Dr Q, a consultant psychiatrist, gave evidence that the person at the centre of the case (let’s call her Barbara) lacked mental capacity to make any of the decisions before the court. His evidence simply collapsed under cross-examination.
“…my overriding impression was a sense of outrage at the impact that the delays described were demonstrably having on P and on his quality of life…”