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Mental Health Act

The Mental Health Act is a law that guides the compulsory treatment and care of people with mental health problems. If you are very unwell, you might be kept In hospital under section, or allowed to leave hospital under a community treatment order.

You have the right to free and confidential support from an independent mental health advocate (IMHA) if you are under section.

The nearest relative of someone under section also has particular powers under the act.

Ask a member of staff if have any Mental Health Act concerns and complaints. If you disagree with your section or want it to end, you can appeal.

Voluntary patients have chosen to be in hospital. They are also known as informal patients.

Treatment and care

We provide a wide range of treatment and care. Most of our patients are treated in the community; only a few need hospital care.

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In hospital under section

What you need to know about being in hospital under a Mental Health Act section.

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Community treatment orders

If you are in hospital under section 3 or 37, you may be able to leave hospital under a community treatment order (CTO).

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Independent mental health advocates

You can get free, independent and confidential advice from an independent mental health advocate (IMHA) whilst in hospital.

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Nearest relative

The Mental Health Act gives a patient's nearest relative certain rights, provided the patient gives consent.

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Mental Health Act Concerns and complaints

How to raise concerns about your treatment and care under the Mental Health Act, or that of someone close to you.

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Voluntary patients

Voluntary patients, also known as informal patients, are those that have consented to hospital treatment for mental health difficulties.

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Mental Health Act leaflets

Leaflets about the Mental Health Act, including easy read versions.

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