01256 772104

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Who can use our IMHA services?

Here's a guide to which patients in Surrey or Slough can use our Independent Mental Health Advocacy (IMHA) services.



Qualifying Patients

The Mental Health Act 2007 sets out who can access an IMHA service. Qualifying Patients are those patients who are 18 and over and are: 1. Detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 (amended) (even if on Section 17 leave) but not those patients detained under emergency holding powers e.g. Sections 4, 5(2), 5(4), 135 or 136; 2. Conditionally discharged restricted patients; 3. Subject to Guardianship under the Act; 4. On a Community Treatment Orders (CTO). As well as patients not covered by any of the above but who are: 5. Being considered for a treatment to which Section 57 applies; 6. Under 18 and being considered for electro-convulsive therapy (ECT) or any other treatment to which section 58A applies.


Exclusions/Exceptions If an individual is eligible as listed above, then they have the legal right to access an IMHA service, and there is a duty on statutory workers to inform qualifying patients of this right, and how to access them.

However, exactly which IMHA service you should contact is determined by which Local Authority or Primary Care Trust (PCT) is responsible for the individual.

To access the Matrix IMHA Service you must be a qualifying patient in Surrey or Slough and registered with a GP service. In practice, this means if you are a qualifying patient placed outside of the borough you normally live in (e.g. in one of the many private hospitals in those boroughs) the IMHA service you have a legal right to access will be that one operated in the borough you normally reside in.

If you are unsure then please contact us to discuss it.