Legal Aspects > Table of commonly used Civil Sections

Table of commonly used Civil Sections

Mental Health Act Assessment 

(MHAA)

Assessment under the Act by two doctors

  • one of whom must be approved under the Mental Health Act, best practice is for both to be and

  •  an AMHP (approved mental health practitioner - a social worker who has undertaken specialist training).


The outcome of a mental health act assessment can be

  • admission under section,

  • admission informally if the patient consents and has capacity to do so,

  • discharge with community follow up or,

  • less likely, discharge without community follow up.

Section
Nature
Length

Renewal

Discharge
Convert

Section 5(4)

Nurse’s holding power, applied to an inpatient by a ward psychiatric nurse.


Can only be used to detain a person in hospital who previously agreed to informal admission and has subsequently changed his/her mind and wishes to leave.

Up to 6 hours, during which time a further assessment will occur.

No.

Responsible Clinician (essentially the responsible Consultant Psychiatrist) at any time.

Responsible Clinician)  or their nominated deputy
Section 5(2)

 

MHAA
2 or 3

Section 5(2)

Doctor’s holding power by the Responsible Clinician (essentially the responsible Consultant Psychiatrist)  or their nominated deputy (ward or on call doctor).


Can only be used to detain a person in hospital who previously agreed to informal admission and has subsequently changed his/her mind and wishes to leave.

Up to 72 hours, during which time best practice dictates that further assessment will occur.

No.

Responsible Clinician (essentially the responsible Consultant Psychiatrist) at any time.

MHAA

Section 2 or 3

Section 135

Magistrates Court Order, applied for an AMHP (approved mental health practitioner- a social worker who has undertaken specialist training).


Enables police officers to enter the property to conduct a MHAA or to remove person to a place of safety to conduct a MHAA.

Up to 72 hours.

No.

Purpose of mental health act assessment, the result of  this assessment may be that a detention is not appropriate.

MHAA

Section 2 or 3

Section 136

Allows a police officer to take a person whom they consider to be mentally disordered to a “place of safety”.


Only applies to a person found in a public place.
Conveyance to a place of safety for MHAA.

Up to 72 hours, during which time best practice dictates that a mental health act assessment will occur.

No.

Purpose of mental health act assessment, the result of  this assessment may be that a detention is not appropriate.

MHAA

Section 2 or 3

Section 4

Emergency order.


One doctor and an AMHP, and can only be applied emergency in which there is not time to summon a second suitable doctor to conduct MHAA.

Up to 72 hours.

No.

Responsible Clinician (essentially the responsible Consultant Psychiatrist) at any time.

MHAA
Section 2 or 3, as soon as possible following admission

Section 2

Assessment order.


Requires MHAA.


Treatment, such as medication, can be given against the person’s wishes under Section 2 orders, as observation of response to treatment constitutes part of the assessment process.

Up to 28 days.

No.

Patient can be discharged by Responsible Clinician (essentially their Consultant Psychiatrist) at any time or by a Mental Health Review Tribunal.

MHAA
Section 3

Section 3

Treatment order.


Requires MHAA.


Doctors must be aware of diagnosis and care plan and that there is “appropriate medical treatment” available.

Initially last up to six months.

If renewed, the next order lasts up to six months and each subsequent order lasts up to one year.

Yes.

Responsible Clinician (essentially their Consultant Psychiatrist) at any time or by Mental Health Review Tribunal or Managers’ Hearing.

No.