HC Deb 08 February 1984 vol 53 c665W
Mr. Cohen

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will now make arrangements to collect centrally information about the inspection and withholding of mail to and from patients under the Mental Health Act 1983, and periodically make such information available.

Mr. John Patten

We have at present no plans to do so. The Mental Health Act Commission, which was set up to monitor the provisions of the Mental Health Act 1983 relating to patients detained under the Act, is taking a particular interest in this area. During their routine visits to hospitals, members of the Commission are asking for information about withheld mail and the reasons for withholding it. We think that this kind of detailed local inquiry, which can be followed up on the spot, is a better way of monitoring these provisions than a statistical return.