Bournemouth University: Bournemouth University develops Mental Capacity Toolkit

BU has developed a Mental Capacity Toolkit to support health and social care professionals working with individuals whose decision-making process is impaired, for example, people living with dementia.

As part of a wider research project funded by the Burdett Trust for Nurses, BU developed the toolkit to enable ethical, legal, and informed professional practice and ensure professionals are confident in their understanding of the Mental Capacity Act 2005.

The BU team identified a need for a Mental Capacity Toolkit that was accessible and easily digestible for all healthcare professionals. It is a comprehensive guide that enables professionals to make better informed decisions about everyday choices for their patients.

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So far it has been accessed by approximately 14,000 professionals and was designed to support a broad range of practitioners across the health and social care practice.

The toolkit contains sections of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 including assessment of capacity and decision making. These sections are underpinned by interactive user experiences such as videos and quizzes.

Professor Lee-Ann Fenge said, “We all take making decisions for granted but if you have cognitive problems, for example caused by dementia, then someone else might have to make a decision for you. These decisions can range from choosing what to have for breakfast, to selling a property.

“Making decisions on behalf of another person can be really difficult which is why we developed this toolkit to ensure healthcare workers can do so professionally and ethically, which is the top priority when working with vulnerable patients.”

The Mental Capacity Toolkit is a free resource for health and social care professionals and for friends or family who may have to make decisions on behalf of another person.

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