SF v Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust [2023] UKUT 205 (AAC)

Appropriate medical treatment The First-tier Tribunal erred in law in deciding that "appropriate medical treatment" was available because its decision was based on two misunderstandings: (a) that interventions which had the purpose merely of containing risk of physical harm were capable of amounting to "medical treatment"; and (b) that medical treatment may be "appropriate" even where it is "not tailored to [the patient's] diagnosis", and where treatment that is "essential" is not available.


Thanks to Angela Wall (Butler Solicitors, solicitor for SF) for providing the judgment.

Judicial summary from Gov.uk

Conditions to continued detention - Mental Health Act 1983 s72(1)(b)(iia) – requirement that ‘appropriate medical treatment’ be available in hospital – whether treatment provided with the aim of keeping the patient ‘physically well, safe and protect those seeking to care for her’ (but no more) satisfied the requirement for therapeutic intent – whether the tribunal was entitled to find that the treatment available in hospital was ‘appropriate’ in circumstances where it had identified treatment which it found to be “essential” but that treatment was not available in the hospital where the patient was detained.


Essex newsletter 134.pdf

This case has been summarised on page 48 of 39 Essex Chambers, 'Mental Capacity Report' (issue 134, September 2023).

External links


Full judgment: BAILII
Download here


  • Other Tribunal cases🔍
  • Upper Tribunal decisions🔍

Date: 16/8/23🔍

Court: Upper Tribunal (Administrative Appeals Chamber)🔍



  • SF🔍
  • Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust🔍
  • RB🔍

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Published: 24/8/23 00:35

Cached: 2024-02-26 08:43:06