Mental Health Regulations explanatory note

Mental Health (Hospital, Guardianship and Consent to Treatment) Regulations 1983 (as amended)

N.B. These Regulations have been superseded: see Mental Health Regulations for details.


Regulations: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10A, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20

Schedules: 1, 2

Explanatory note

Explanatory note

(This Note is not part of the Regulations.)

These Regulations are the principal regulations dealing with the exercise of compulsory powers in respect of persons liable to be detained in hospital or subject to guardianship under the Mental Health Act 1983 (“the Act”).

Part I (Regulations 1 to 3) contains general provisions affecting the interpretation of the regulations and procedures required by the Act.

Part II (Regulations 4 to 11) contains provisions relating to the procedure for, and record of, hospital admissions, guardianship, re-classification and transfer of patients, and renewal of authority for detention or guardianship. Provision is also made for the classification, and record, of patients moved to England and Wales from Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. The forms for use in connection with these requirements are prescribed in Schedule 1.

Part III (Regulations 12 to 15) relates to the functions of guardians and nearest relatives of patients. Duties of guardians who are not local social services authorities, additional to those imposed by the Act, are prescribed, while the local social services authorities responsible for any patients subject to guardianship are required to visit such patients regularly. The nearest relatives of patients are empowered to authorise other persons to exercise their functions under the Act in respect of patients and provision is made in relation to the discharge of patients by nearest relatives. The forms for use in connection with discharge procedure are prescribed in Schedule 1.

Part IV (Regulation 16) concerns consent to treatment. It prescribes treatments (other than those specified in the Act) which are to require either consent and a second opinion or consent or a second opinion. The forms for use in connection with the consent procedure are prescribed in Schedule 1.

Part V (Regulations 17 to 18) contains provisions on the correspondence of patients. Procedures to be followed on opening postal packets and for making an application to the Mental Health Act Commission for review ofa decision to withhold a postal packet or anything contained in it are set out.

Part IV (Regulations 19 and 20 and Schedule 2) contains transitional provisions and revocations. In particular provision is made so that the regulations apply to mental welfare officers during the transitional period before the introduction of approved social workers. The Mental Health (Hospital and Guardianship) Regulations 1960 are revoked.