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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-03032: Ross Thomson (North East Scotland)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 22 September 2016

To ask the Scottish Government whose responsibility it is to ensure that a person who is subject to a short-term detention certificate is provided with information on appealing to the Mental Health Tribunal.

Answered by: Maureen Watt 30 September 2016

A Short Term Detention Certificate (STDC) is granted where the patient is not already subject to compulsory measures. It may also be granted where the patient is subject to an Emergency Detention Certificate (EDC).

The patient and the patient's named person both have the right to apply to Mental Health Tribunal Scotland (MHTS) under section 50 of the Mental Health (Care and Treatment)(Scotland) Act 2003 for a revocation of the STDC.

Chapter two of the statutory Code of Practice which accompanies the 2003 Act, provides operational advice for healthcare professionals and states that it is good practice for the Mental Health Officer (MHO), when interviewing the patient, to provide them with an explanation of their right to appeal to the MHTS and with advice on how to access legal support as well as the support of an independent advocate in the event a STDC is granted.

When a STDC is granted, best practice would suggest that a MHO should consider ensuring the patient is aware as is possible of their status and rights and has access to information on representation and advocacy service. They should also make sure the patient or the named person remain fully aware of their rights throughout the detention period – for example, in relation to their right of appeal for a revocation of a STDC under section 50 of the 2003 Act or in their relation to their rights to advocacy service.