Department for Constitutional Affairs. Mental Capacity Act 2005 code of practice. 2007. (accessed 2 April 2019)

Griffith R. Preparing for future incapacity: part 2. Br J Nurs. 2018; 27:(1)60-61

Best Interests Guidance on determining the best interests of adults who lack the capacity to make a decision for themselves. 2007. (accessed 2 April 2019)

Attending a best interests meeting

11 April 2019
Volume 28 · Issue 7


Richard Griffith, Senior Lecturer in Health Law at Swansea University, considers the conduct of a best interests meeting and the role nurses play in those meetings

Since the introduction of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 the determination of a best interest is based on a holistic approach that asks the decision-maker to consider the view and values of the patient and the views of their carers as well as those of other professionals involved (Mental Capacity Act 2005, section 4).

In cases of complex health needs more than one person will be involved in the treatment of the individual. To ensure that the complex needs of the patient are fully considered it will generally be necessary to hold a ‘best interests’ meeting with the professionals concerned and the patient's carers (Department for Constitutional Affairs, 2007). Such meetings are held to meet the requirement in the Mental Capacity Act 2005 code of practice (Department for Constitutional Affairs, 2007) for a proper and objective assessment to be carried out on every occasion when decisions are being considered on behalf of a person who lacks capacity.

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