Explain the difference between capacity and competency in mental health contexts.

Legal and ethical concerns related to psychiatric emergency | NURS 6670 – Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Role II: Adults and Older Adults | Walden University

In mental health contexts, capacity refers to an individual’s ability to make decisions or understand information. It includes the ability to weigh different actions against each other and understand their consequences in order to make educated decisions. Competency on the other hand refers to the skills and experience possessed by a person which enable them to perform certain tasks or carry out specific roles; it is also used to assess an individual’s readiness for activities such as voting or legal proceedings. While capacity focuses on the ability of someone to grasp what they are being asked, competency identifies whether or not they can execute such requests.

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