Search Legislation

Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003

Section 1: principles for discharging certain functions

9.Section 1 sets out a series of factors which must be considered by persons when they are discharging functions under the 2003 Act in relation to a patient who is over 18.

10.“Discharging a function” means carrying out a duty imposed by the 2003 Act or exercising a power conferred by it. (For this purpose, a power may be exercised by taking no action (see subsection (11)). As an example, a doctor, member of medical staff or mental health officer may take a decision concerning emergency or short term detention of a patient, or applying for, renewing, or seeking to vary a compulsory treatment order.

11.Subsection (3) sets out matters which a person discharging a function under the 2003 Act must take account into when doing so. The matters mentioned in subsections (3)(a), (b) and (d) should be read along with subsections (8), (9) and (10) respectively.

12.In addition, subsections (5) and (6) set out further matters that the person is to take account of in certain cases. The matters mentioned in subsection (5) are only to be considered if the function is not the making of a decision about medical treatment. The matters in subsection (6) are only to be considered where the person in relation to whom the function is being discharged is a person who is, or has been, subject to one of the certificates and orders mentioned in the subsection.

13.After having considered the matters mentioned in subsections (3), (5) and (6) and any other relevant matters, the person is required to discharge the function in a manner that appears to the person to be the one that involves the minimum restriction on the freedom of the patient that is necessary in the circumstances(subsection(4)).

14.Subsection (7) exempts certain persons from the ambit of the section.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Scottish Executive department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources