NHS England, 'Legal advice on remote MHA assessments' (26/1/21)

Remote MHA assessments This email sets out advice on Devon Partnership NHS Trust v SSHSC [2021] EWHC 101 (Admin) and "immediate action required" based on that advice: (1) "The ruling applies to Part II of the MHA only, and not Part III of the MHA. It applies to both new assessments for detention and section renewals (including CTO renewals). Individuals who are currently detained following a remote assessment will need to be reassessed in person, if ongoing detention is deemed necessary." (2) "Stop using remote methods for any new or ongoing assessments for detention or section renewals under Part II of the Act. All mental health providers should identify and reassess individuals who are currently detained under Part II of the MHA following a remote assessment as soon as possible, if ongoing detention is deemed necessary. We also recommend notifying people who were detained via remote assessment, but have since been discharged from their section, that this Court ruling has now passed." Updated guidance: NHS England, 'Further legal advice on remote MHA assessments' (3/2/21).

Text of email

This is an update to the communication regarding the Court ruling that clinicians and AMHPs must attend in person when assessing someone under the Mental Health Act (MHA).

We have received the following legal advice which we will be using to update our published guidance in more detail:

  • The ruling applies to Part II of the MHA only, and not Part III of the MHA.
  • It applies to both new assessments for detention and section renewals (including CTO renewals).
  • Individuals who are currently detained following a remote assessment will need to be reassessed in person, if ongoing detention is deemed necessary.

Immediate action required:

  • Stop using remote methods for any new or ongoing assessments for detention or section renewals under Part II of the Act.
  • All mental health providers should identify and reassess individuals who are currently detained under Part II of the MHA following a remote assessment as soon as possible, if ongoing detention is deemed necessary.
  • We also recommend notifying people who were detained via remote assessment, but have since been discharged from their section, that this Court ruling has now passed.

This information is also being shared with ADASS, [Principal] Social Workers and the AMHP Network.

The published legal guidance will be updated with more details, but please raise any urgent questions via the MHLDA cell: [email address removed but contact MHLO if you need it for work purposes]

Best wishes,

[name removed]
Single Point of Contact (SPOC)
Incident Coordination Centre (North West)
NHS England and NHS Improvement

RESOURCES DATABASE

Type: Coronavirus resource🔍 · Health guidance🔍

Title: Legal advice on remote MHA assessments

Author: NHS England🔍

Date: 27/1/20🔍

What links here: