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‘Staggering’ rise in restraint of black people in mental healthcare

PUBLISHED

The rate of people from black backgrounds being restrained in mental healthcare has more than doubled in the past six years, widening the gap with other racial groups, according to official NHS data.

Standardised rates of black and black British people subject to restrictive interventions – including physical, chemical and mechanical restraints – have leapt from 52.1 per 100,000 people in 2016-17 to 106.2 in 2021-22.

That is compared to a much smaller increase of 30% in the same period for people from white backgrounds, from 15.8 per 100,000 to 20.5.

NHS race and health observatory director Habib Naqvi told HSJ he was “very concerned” at the rise.

He said a “range of complex causes are likely to be presented to account for this pattern”, including disparities in care pathways, late presentation and lack of timely diagnosis, and general overuse of restrictive practice on people from minority ethnic backgrounds.

He added: “It is critical we also focus on ‘causes of the causes’ of these disparities, including the impact of discrimination and bias on access, experience and therefore outcomes of mental health services.”

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 24 November 2022

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