In 2022, the Government published a draft Mental Health Bill to amend the Mental Health Act 1983. This followed an in-depth Independent Review of the legislation published in 2018. The reforms are intended to enhance patient rights, choice and autonomy, and address racial disparities that have led to disproportionate compulsory detention and treatment of people from ethnic minorities.

These POSTnotes explore the research on four themes: race and ethnic inequalities, potential impacts on children and young people aged under 18, approaches to improve patient choice, and impacts on autistic people and people with a learning disability. Each briefing summarises proposals for reform, highlights relevant research evidence and presents stakeholder perspectives.