To investigate the interpretation of Section 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983 by Section 12(2) approved doctors and to describe a pathway that facilitates early assessment of people detained under Section 136. We surveyed a random sample of Section 12(2) approved doctors in the West Midlands.
A response rate of 70% was achieved. Approximately 65% believe that it would be illegal to transfer a person under Section 136 from the police station to a further place of safety, such as hospital. Thirty-five per cent believed that this could be done legally or were unsure.
Ambiguity still remains about the legal interpretations of the provisions of Section 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983, which needs to be rectified.
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