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Journal cover: Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities

ISSN: 2044-1282
Previously published as: Advances in Mental Health and Learning Disabilities

Online from: 2010

Subject Area: Health and Social Care

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Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS) – a survey exploring the views of psychiatrists


Document Information:
Title:Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS) – a survey exploring the views of psychiatrists
Author(s):Susan Varghese, (Speciality Trainee Registrar (ST-6) for Tees, Esk & Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, Middlesbrough, UK), Aynur Gormez, (Speciality Trainee Registrar (ST-6) for Oxfordshire Learning Disability NHS Trust, Oxford, UK), Tim Andrews, (Consultant Psychiatrist for Oxfordshire Learning Disability NHS Trust, Oxford, UK), Rachel Griffiths, (Mental Capacity Act Implementation Manager at the Social Care Institute for Excellence, London, UK), Matthew Stephenson, (Consultant Psychiatrist for Oxfordshire Learning Disability NHS Trust, Oxford, UK)
Citation:Susan Varghese, Aynur Gormez, Tim Andrews, Rachel Griffiths, Matthew Stephenson, (2012) "Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS) – a survey exploring the views of psychiatrists", Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Vol. 6 Iss: 2, pp.52 - 61
Keywords:Deprivation of liberty, Ethics, Human rights, Intellectual disabilities, Learning disability, Safeguards, Training
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/20441281211208419 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Acknowledgements:The authors would like to acknowledge Dr S. Bhaumik, former chair of Faculty of Learning Disability Psychiatry RCPsych, and Dr J.S. Chalmers, Consultant Psychiatrist, Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, for their valuable suggestions in the development of the data collection tool.
Abstract:

Purpose – Psychiatrists are among the front-line professionals involved in the implementation of Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS). This paper aims to explore how the safeguards are perceived and practised amongst psychiatrists.

Design/methodology/approach – The authors carried out a postal survey among 519 psychiatrists on their views and experiences on DOLS.

Findings – A total of 171 psychiatrists (36 per cent) responded to the survey. Nearly three-quarters of the participants had received DOLS training and 81 per cent of individuals who had training believed that DOLS would protect the rights of vulnerable people. Almost half of both groups agreed that DOLS make a valuable contribution to the provision of necessary care in the least restrictive way possible. The most common concern raised was possible increase in bureaucratic process. Interface between the existing legislations continues to be a grey area for many practitioners with difficulties in interpreting the relevant Code of Practice. In total, 50 per cent of the participants felt DOLS should extend to community placement provisions.

Originality/value – The views and concerns expressed by psychiatrists in this paper are relevant to all professionals working with adults who lack capacity to consent to their care or treatment in any setting. As the process continues to widen, it is important to recognise the issues, encourage use of DOLS process to protect human rights, and to address key gaps in training.



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