• Cases concerning eating disorders and disordered eating are becoming increasingly prevalent in the Court of Protection and High Court.

    In this session, we considered some of the tricky practical, clinical and legal issues involved:

    • the distinction between disordered eating and an eating disorder;
    • understanding the different types of eating disorder;
    • other mental illnesses/disorders that may impact nutrition and hydration;
    • the link between mind and gut;
    • physical illnesses and autoimmune diseases and their relationship with disordered eating;
    • supporting people who are refusing nutrition and hydration:
      - assessing capacity;
      - hunger strikes; an impairment or disturbance in the functioning of mind or brain?
      - complexities in physical and psychiatric/psychological treatment
    • reflecting on the legal landscape and key lessons from previous cases for treating (or withdrawing/withholding treatment) those refusing nutrition and hydration:
      - Mental Health Act 1983
      - Court of Protection
      - Inherent Jurisdiction of the High Court

    Dr Ty Glover (Consultant Psychiatrist) and Dr Jeremy Woodward (Consultant Gastroenterologists) have both acted as independent experts in the Court of Protection.

    Nicola Kohn from 39 Essex Chambers practises in public, common and regulatory law and specialises in Court of Protection matters.


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