Philosophers Help Doctors with Ethical Questions

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Medical professionals are calling on philosophers in the UK to help answer questions involving personal autonomy and mental health. Some of these questions are being raised by a supposed conflict between the Medical Health Act and the Mental Capacity Act. According to the Guardian:

The Mental Health Act says intervention is required where a mentally-ill individual is a danger to themselves (or to the public). But the Mental Capacity Act (2007) is organised around a very different legal principle: it says that if someone passes a legal test of their capacity to make a decision, then they cannot be treated without their consent – even if they suffer from a major mental disorder.

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