Understanding mental capacity
Understanding mental capacity

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Understanding mental capacity

Week 4: Assessing mental capacity

Introduction

Before the mental capacity legislation, the assessment of whether a person had mental capacity and whether they could make their own decisions or would need another person to do so on their behalf was made by a professional, usually a doctor. This has now changed. The person who should do the assessment for everyday decisions is usually the adult most directly involved with the person at the time. This could be a family member or a paid carer. For bigger decisions such as those involving aspects of medical treatment, the doctor or other healthcare worker who will be providing that treatment is usually the assessor. This week, you undertake an assessment of mental capacity step by step through a case study. But first, how does a mental capacity assessment relate to other assessments in care settings?

By the end of this week you should be able to:

  • explain what is meant by the assessment of mental capacity
  • describe who undertakes an assessment of mental capacity
  • describe the test for assessing mental capacity and how it is applied
  • describe how an assessment might be undertaken.
Skip Your course resources
MHC_1

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371