Although community treatment orders (CTOs) have been used internationally since the 1980s, they were only introduced into England and Wales in 2007 by amendments to the 1983 Mental Health Act. Aimed to replace the common use of extended Section 17 leave to enforce community treatment, CTOs are believed to offer patients more protection owing to stringent criteria for their use. Literature reviews, however, do not demonstrate any evidence favouring the use of CTOs and in this age of evidence-based medicine it is questionable whether psychiatrists will change from a familiar practice to an unproven one. Declaration of interest: None.
Woolley, S. (2010, October). Involuntary treatment in the community: Role of community treatment orders. Psychiatrist. https://doi.org/10.1192/pb.bp.109.028027