Written answers

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Department of Health

Mental Health Services Provision

Photo of David CullinaneDavid Cullinane (Waterford, Sinn Fein)
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573. To ask the Minister for Health the redress available to a person (details supplied); the best practise relating to the use of electro-convulsive therapy, ECT, then and now; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37430/16]

Photo of Helen McEnteeHelen McEntee (Meath East, Fine Gael)
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A programme of electro-convulsive therapy (ECT) can only be administered to a patient in accordance with the provisions of section 59 of the Mental Health Act 2001 and rules governing its use drawn up by the Mental Health Commission.

Version 3 of the ‘Rules Governing the Use of Electro-Convulsive Therapy’ were published on 10 February 2016 and are available on the Commission’s website. Among other things, these rules provide that there must be a named consultant psychiatrist with overall responsibility for the management of ECT. They also state that an approved centre where ECT is administered to patients must have written operational policies and procedures concerning ECT and must ensure that such procedures comply with these Rules. Such written operational policies and procedures concerning ECT must be reviewed annually, in line with best international practice.

In relation to complaints about treatment against a hospital or individual Consultant, such complaints should first be addressed to the relevant hospital concerned. Most hospitals have a who will take complaints in person, over the phone or in writing. Contact details are normally available on the hospital’s website.

If a complaint relates to a doctor's fitness to practise medicine, then such complaints should be directed to the Medical Council which can take action where it is believed that a doctor has serious failings in his/her practice. The Medical Council acts in the public interest, and can impose restrictions on a doctor’s registration, which would restrict or remove their right to practise medicine in Ireland. Complaints to the Medical Council can be made by submitting the relevant complaint form in writing and this can be emailed or sent to the Council by post.


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