MHA section 5(4) nurses holding power

Document category: Trust wide policy

Document date: November 1, 2022

This policy must be read in conjunction with Chapter 18 of the Code of Practice – MHA 1983. Chapter 8 (8.79- 8.84) reference guide to the MHA 1983.

Section 5, subsection 4 of the Mental Health Act states, “If, in the case of a patient who is receiving treatment for mental disorder as an in-patient in a hospital, it appears to a nurse of the prescribed class that the patient is suffering from mental disorder to such a degree that it is necessary for his health or safety or for the protection of others for him to be immediately restrained from leaving the hospital; and that it is not practicable to secure the immediate attendance (or clinician) for the purpose of furnishing a report under subsection (2) above, the nurse may record that fact in writing; and in that event the patient may be detained in the hospital for a period of six hours from the time when that fact is so recorded or until the earlier arrival at the place where the patient is detained of a practitioner (or clinician) having power to furnish a report under that subsection.”

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