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Guardianship under the Mental Health Act 1983, England 2014-15, National Statistics

Publication date: 09:30 August 05, 2015

Summary

Note: (06/08/15).  Updates to the csv and Annual Report have been published. These correct the file name of the csv (the content remains the same), clarify the titles of 3 charts (figures 1.2, 1.4 and 3.2) and update a reference to refer to an appendix in the main publication (on page 45)

 

This report contains information on the use of Guardianship under Section 7 and 37 of the Mental Health Act 1983, during the reporting period 1 April 2014 - 31 March 2015. It contains information on new, continuing and closed cases at national, regional and local authority levels and includes breakdowns by gender, Guardianship type, and local authority region.


Key Facts

  • For the 2014-15 reporting period there were 212 new Guardianship cases. This is 86 fewer than in 2013-14, a decrease of 29 per cent. This decrease follows a 6 per cent increase between 2012-13 and 2013-14. This increase however had been preceded by three consecutive years of decline.
  • As at 31 March 2015, 522 people in England were subject to a Guardianship order.  This is 108 fewer than at the same point in 2014; a reduction of 17 per cent. This is also the tenth consecutive year of decline in continuing cases from 948 cases in 2004-05 to 522 cases in 2014-15, a reduction of 45 per cent over this period. The decline in Guardianship usage may be due in part to the availability of other mental health legislation.
  • The number of closed cases reduced slightly compared to the previous year, with 301 cases closed in 2014-15 compared to 313 in 2013-14 (a reduction of 4 per cent). The number of closed cases has now reduced for five consecutive years, since the peak of 496 cases in 2009-10. This represents an overall reduction of 39 per cent since 2009-10.
  • The North West and North East regions had the highest rate of new cases per million-population, both recording 9.3 cases per million-population, falling from 11.1 and 13.5 respectively in 2013-14 (based on population figures for those aged 16 years and over). This compares to 4.8 new cases per million-population for England overall.
  • The East of England region had the fewest new cases with 0.8 cases per million-population, compared to 2.9 cases last year. This is also the only region with less than 2 cases per million-population.
  • The North West had the highest rate for continuing cases with 23.5 cases per million-population. The South East and London continue to have the lowest rate of continuing cases. The South East had 6.4 cases per million-population and London 3.7 cases per million-population, although London represents an increase compared to 2013-14.
  • The durations of the 301 Guardianship cases ending in 2014-15 ranged from less than 3 months (15 cases) to over 10 years (14 cases). Of the 287 concluded Section 7 cases, 72 per cent (206) had durations of less than 2 years. Of the 14 concluded Section 37 cases, 29 per cent (4) had durations of less than 2 years. The median duration of a Guardianship case in England was 12.0 months.

Coverage

Date Range: 01 April 2014 to 31 March 2015
Geographical coverage: England
Geographical granularity: Local Authorities

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