Best Interest Assessment

University of the West of England, Bristol
Delivery Method: Face-to-face

In accordance with The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards statute, to apply you must be one of the following:

  • a social worker registered with the Health and Care Professions Council
  • an approved Mental Health Professional
  • a first level nurse, registered in Sub-Part 1 of the Nurses' Part of the Register maintained under article 5 of the Nursing and Midwifery Order 2001
  • an occupational therapist registered in Part 6 of the register maintained under article 5 of the Health Professions Order 2001
  • a chartered psychologist who is listed in the British Psychological Society's Register of Chartered Psychologists and who holds a relevant practising certificate issued by that Society.

In addition, you must also have at least two years post registration experience in that profession and not be suspended from the register or list relevant to your profession.

This course is offered at Level 3 (Degree) and Masters level and is delivered at our Glenside Campus.

Course content includes:

  • Application of values to the Best Interests Assessor role:
    • Ethical implications of deprivation of liberty
    • Identifying and challenging discrimination
    • Promoting rights, dignity and self determination
    • Application of the human rights principles enshrined in the Mental Capacity Act 2005.
  • Legal and policy framework:
    • Mental Capacity Act 2005 including related codes of practice and national and local policy guidance
    • Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards and role of the Best Interest Assessor within them
    • Other relevant legislation including: Mental Health Act 2007, Human Rights Act 1998; Care Standards Act 2000 and policy and legislation relating to physical restraint.
    • Legal position and accountability of Best Interest Assessors.
  • Mental Capacity:
    • Models of mental capacity
    • Implications of mental incapacity for service users, families and carers
    • Care and treatment for people who lack capacity
    • Impact of discrimination on well-being, mental health and mental capacity.
  • Communication and Partnership Working:
    • Planning and implementing options for care
    • Consulting and negotiating with relevant stakeholders
    • Appropriate use of authority and informed decision making
    • Legal presentations.


A variety of teaching approaches will be used including formal lectures, on-line learning, case studies, small group discussion and other workshop activities.

All candidates must have a letter completed by their supporting Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards lead/supervisory body to show that they will have access to at least two Best Interests Assessment shadowing opportunities, in a timely manner to enable the candidate to complete the course assessments.

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