13/06/2019

Minister of State for Care, Caroline Dinenage, has provided an update on the implementation of the new deprivation of liberty framework which states:-

‘Our intention is that the new Liberty Protection Safeguards system to come into force on 1st October 2020, subject to our ongoing implementation planning with delivery partners’.  

Those following the progress of the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act 2019, which received Royal Assent on 16 May 2019, will have been keeping an eye out for a start date for the new framework.

Key points to note from this update are:– 

  • The Code of Practice, a vital document for practitioners and families, is being developed to provide detailed and easy to understand guidance;
  • Initial outputs from the working groups contributing to the new Code is expected by summer 2019;
  • Input from expert groups and those with ‘lived experience’ planned;
  • Further full public consultation to follow;
  • Final draft of the Code to be laid down before Parliament in spring 2020;
  • Drafting on statutory instruments is in progress;
  • Additional work with key delivery partners and stakeholders to be taken forward to prepare for implementation;
  • Initial materials will be published for the sector to support preparation for the new system; and
  • Training for staff and for those to be approved as ‘Approved Mental Capacity Professionals’ is being developed.

Comment

After much debate and uncertainty about the new regime we now have a helpful indication of where this is all heading. As with any new regime there will be significant challenges with transition and implementation. A comprehensive and easy to use Code of Practice will be vital to the new system. Given the widespread criticism of the incumbent DOLS system the new Code and supporting materials will be closely scrutinised.

This was one of the themes covered in our recent annual mental health seminars that took place at the beginning of June. We will be offering more training and updates on the new LPS regime. If you are interested in receiving information about this please click here.