Statement by the Mecklenburg-Pomerania State parliament dated, July, 5, 2017

Dear Mr. Discher,

The Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Health has been asked to provide additional comments in response to your letter above. Along with the letter from 6/26/2017 the following has now been stated:

With regard to appointing doctors to management positions, it should be noted that this is first and foremost a matter for the respective hospital owner.

However, since the new Mental Illness Act came into force in 2016, it has now become necessary to reach agreement with the ministry responsible for health with regard to the personal appointment of the respective managerial staff.

The Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Health was therefore unable to comment on appointments that had been made before the new Mental Illness Act came into force and therefore did not require an agreement, irrespective of data protection concerns.

Your claim that people with mental illnesses disappear without a trace in psychiatric hospitals is unfounded. It should be noted that every commitment requires a court decision, which is regularly reviewed and cannot be extended at will. It was also true, however, that with regard to medical confidentiality, no information about patients was given to third parties.

The Ministry could not understand your allegation that you were not aware of any authorities responsible for complaints. In fact, there are numerous contact points in the country for those concerned to whom they can turn with their questions and complaints.

First and foremost, the provincial councils and mayors would be responsible for monitoring the facilities and the ministry responsible for health would be responsible for supervising them. In addition, any person concerned may turn to the Ombudsman, the Petitions Committee of the State Parliament and, during commitment, to the Visiting Commissions or the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. All operations and interventions are also justiciable. As a result, there are many bodies and institutions available to those affected to whom they can turn with their concerns and wishes.

Lastly, in view of your own rhetoric, it should be pointed out once again that psychiatry in Germany and in particular in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is by no means characterized by the abuse of power, inhumane treatment or torture and psychiatric forced treatment.

These are the supplementary remarks of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Health.

I shall now submit your petition, together with the comments of the provincial Parliament on the matter, to the representatives appointed by the Committee on Petitions for consideration. They will inform the Committee on Petitions of the outcome of their review. On this basis, the Committee on Petitions will draw up a recommendation to Parliament for a decision. You will be informed of Parliament’s decision on your matter without the need to request the information.

With kind regards

(Sylke Pulow)

Deputy Head of the Secretariat

Reply made by Discher

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