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Mental Health (Amendment) Act 1982

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

31Interim hospital orders

(1)Where a person is convicted before the Crown Court of an offence punishable with imprisonment (other than an offence the sentence for which is fixed by law) or is convicted by a magistrates' court of an offence punishable on summary conviction with imprisonment and the court before or by which he is convicted is satisfied, on the written or oral evidence of two medical practitioners—

(a)that the offender is suffering from mental illness, psychopathic disorder, mental impairment or severe mental impairment; and

(b)that there is reason to suppose that the mental disorder from which the offender is suffering is such that it may be appropriate for a hospital order to be made in his case,

the court may, before making a hospital order or dealing with him in some other way, make an order (" an interim hospital order ") authorising his admission to such hospital as may be specified in the order and his detention there in accordance with this section.

(2)In the case of an offender who is subject to an interim hospital order the court may make a hospital order without his being brought before the court if he is represented by counsel or a solicitor and his counsel or solicitor is given an opportunity of being heard.

(3)Of the medical practitioners whose evidence is taken into account under subsection (1) above at least one shall be a practitioner approved for the purposes of section 28 of the principal Act and at least one shall be employed at the hospital which is to be specified in the order.

(4)An interim hospital order shall not be made for the admission of an offender to a hospital unless the court is satisfied, on the written or oral evidence of the medical practitioner who would be in charge of his treatment or of some other person representing the managers of the hospital, that arrangements have been made for his admission to that hospital and for his admission to it within the period of twenty-eight days beginning with the date of the order; and if the court is so satisfied the court may, pending his admission, give directions for his conveyance to and detention in a place of safety.

(5)An interim hospital order—

(a)shall be in force for such period, not exceeding twelve weeks, as the court may specify when making the order; but

(b)may be renewed for further periods of not more than twenty-eight days at a time if it appears to the court, on the written or oral evidence of the responsible medical officer, that the continuation of the order is warranted;

but no such order shall continue in force for more than six months in all and the court shall terminate the order if it makes a hospital order in respect of the offender or decides, after considering the written or oral evidence of the responsible medical officer, to deal with the offender in some other way.

(6)The power of renewing an interim hospital order may be exercised without the offender being brought before the court if he is represented by counsel or a solicitor and his counsel or solicitor is given an opportunity of being heard.

(7)Where an interim hospital order is made in respect of an offender—

(a)a constable or any other person directed to do so by the court shall convey the offender to the hospital specified in the order within the period mentioned in subsection (4) above ; and

(b)the managers of the hospital shall admit him within that period and thereafter detain him in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(8)If an offender absconds from a hospital in which he is detained in pursuance of an interim hospital order, or while being conveyed to or from such a hospital, he may be arrested without warrant by a constable and shall, after being arrested, be brought as soon as practicable before the court that made the order; and the court may thereupon terminate the order and deal with him in any way in which it could have dealt with him if no such order had been made.

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