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Community treatment proposal needs study

February 15, 2012
Thorough consideration is needed on the introduction of the proposed Community Treatment Order, which requires mental patients receive designated treatment while living in the community.
Secretary for Food & Health Dr York Chow told the Legislative Council today the legislative proposal will have a far-reaching impact on both patients and society in aspects such as protection of patients' personal data and the scope of authority of healthcare professionals.
He said there is an international trend to gradually focus on community and ambulatory services in the treatment of mental illness, and to allow the early discharge of mental patients when their condition has stabilised for treatment in the community.
The Hospital Authority employs 138 healthcare and allied health personnel as case managers for the provision of intensive and personalised community support for 9,000 patients. The Case Management Programme will be further extended to cover four more districts in the coming year.
Since October 2010, Integrated Community Centres for Mental Wellness have been in operation at 24 service points. Six have already been operating in permanent accommodation. Nine have secured permanent accommodation, including seven where preparatory work is being carried out and two where local consultation will be conducted later this year.