This is a short course on writing reports for Tribunal hearings. This course is for psychiatrists, registrars and treating teams.
In this course you will:
- learn the purpose of reports for Tribunal hearings
- hear general tips on writing reports
- read an example report
- hear tips on writing different parts of the report using the template
- get our quick reference guide to report writing to help you remember the key points.
This course takes about 15 minutes to complete.
You can find our report templates on our Forms page.
If you are unfamiliar with the Tribunal process you can learn about it on our What happens at a Tribunal hearing page.
Help the patient understand the hearing process and support them to participate
It is important to help the patient understand why they will have a Tribunal hearing and to support them to participate.
- Talk to the patient when you are making a temporary treatment order and explain why.
- Before you write the report, talk to the patient about their views and preferences, the Mental Health and Wellbeing Act and why you think their treatment may need to be compulsory.
- Educate the patient about the Tribunal process. You can show them the videos on the What happens at a Tribunal hearing and How to prepare for a Tribunal hearing pages of the Tribunal's website.
- Encourage and support the patient to invite family, friends or carers to the hearing.
- Provide support and assist the patient to prepare for the hearing. Explain what's in the treatment report and suggest they use the What I want to tell the Tribunal form.
- Offer to help the patient contact Victoria Legal Aid if they want a lawyer, or to access Independent Mental Health Advocacy or peer support services.
These things can strengthen your relationship with the patient, and help ensure they have a positive experience.
Watch: The purpose of reports for Tribunal hearings and general tips
Read this example report
We have de-identified a report for a Tribunal hearing as an example of what a report for a Tribunal hearing should look like. Read the report now:
Watch: Tips on sections of the report template
Remember our key points:
- Address the report to the patient as if you are writing a letter to them
- Write sensitively and respectfully in plain English
- Make it clear why you think the patient needs compulsory treatment
- Provide facts to support your reasoning
- Don’t use medical jargon or acronyms
- Use patient focused and recovery-oriented language
Use our quick reference guide to writing reports
This guide will help you remember:
- the key points of this training, and
- what to include in each section of the report.
Recovery Oriented Language
The Mental Health Coordinating Council has published a Recovery Oriented Language Guide.
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Thank you for completing this training
We look forward to reading your reports.