As you reported (News Focus, page 14, 25 June), in a meeting with 10 leading mental health organisations on 11 June, junior health minister Paul Boateng indicated there was no government commitment to reviewing the Mental Health Act 1983.

I was at the meeting, and found this clarification helpful. But I do not take it necessarily to be the final word on whether there will be a revision. Baroness Ramsay, speaking in the Lords on behalf of the government in response to the Mental Health (Amendment) (No2) Bill, said,'we are considering the need for a review of the Mental Health Act'. This suggests the option is still open, which I think is right, even though there is no commitment.

Gil Hitchon

Chief executive


London WC1