Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust v AB & Ors [2019] EWCOP 11

AB suffers from a conversion disorder with comorbid acquired brain injury and is detained under section 3 of the Mental Health Act. At times AB is catatonic and lies in a foetal position on the floor. She has a history of self-harm during these periods, and for that reason she wears protective headgear at all times. In the light of AB’s condition and the difficulties in accommodating her appropriately, the Trust has had to adapt the room in which she has been living urgently, and the condition of the room therefore looks somewhat poor. AB’s son took a video recording of his mother in her room and gave it to the Mail Online who intended to publish it. The Trust issued an application to prevent the publication of the video on the grounds that it was in breach of AB’s private life and right to privacy and that it was not in her best interests to publish.

Mrs Justice Lieven agreed that the video should not be published, even if AB’s face was pixilated, since she would still be recognisable. The video would be an interference with AB’s privacy and her private life.

The full judgment can be read here.

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