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care and support

Independent Mental Health Advocates (IMHAs)

DescriptionThe Mental Health Act 1983 requires that independent mental health advocacy is offered to "qualifying" patients. The qualifying patient does not have to take it up - it's completely their choice. A qualifying patient can be anyone who is:

- Detained under the Mental Health Act (even if they are currently on leave of absence from hospital), except for patients detained under sections 4, 5(2), 5(4), 135 or 136;

- A conditionally discharged restricted patient;

- Subject to guardianship under the Act on supervised community treatment (SCT);

- Being considered for a treatment to which section 57 applies ("a section 57 treatment"); or

- Under 18 and being considered for electro-convulsive therapy (ECT) or any other treatment to which section 58A applies ("a section 58A treatment")

For more information about IMHAs, visit the Rethink charity website.

Visit the Rethink Mental Illness website

Record last updated: 17 June 2014