Experiences of the early implementation of the Mental health (care and treatment) (Scotland) act, 2003: a cohort study

This evaluative research study was commissioned to explore the implementation of the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003 (MHCT Act). A team of independent researchers including 8 mental health service users undertook the study, which lasted 2 years from September 2006.

Using qualitative methods, the experiences and viewpoints of those subjected to compulsory care and treatment, of informal carers and families, and of a range of health and social care professionals and advocacy workers were explored in-depth. The findings should be read within the context of the research study undertaken, and care taken in generalising to different populations and areas. Main findings are presented.