Introduction to Mental Health
No health without mental health: a cross-government mental health outcomes strategy for people of all ages:-

"Good mental health and resilience are fundamental to our physical health, our relationships, our education, our training, our work and to achieving our potential."

Department of Health - Health Care

Mental health is an interesting and complicated aspect of medicine that has wide-reaching effects which are often unrealised or underestimated. The delicate topic of overriding refusal to treatment, even in those who are competent to make such a decision, necessitate added complexity in order to attempt to safeguard patients against those who may seek to abuse them.

Mental health acts attempt to address two different issues; the need to protect the patient him/herself and to protect the general public from the patient. It is evident that medical ethics has a large role to play in these situations as it is important to balance the four principles as suggested by Beauchamp and Childress (2001) of autonomy, beneficence, justice and non-maleficence. In this area of medicine where autonomy is often forcefully restricted it is important to consider these principles carefully in order to in order to reach a balanced decision.