Part VAdmission to and Detention in Hospital and Guardianship

Procedure for admission of patients: hospital

20Medical recommendations: hospital

(1)The medical recommendations required for the purposes of an application for admission shall satisfy the following requirements—

(a)such recommendations shall be signed on or before the date of the application and shall be given by medical practitioners (neither being the applicant) who have personally examined the patient separately, in which case not more than 5 days must have elapsed between the days on which the separate examinations took place, or, where no objection has been made by the patient or his nearest relative, together;

(b)one of the recommendations shall be given by a practitioner approved for the purposes of this section by a Health Board as having special experience in the diagnosis or treatment of mental disorder and the other recommendation shall, if practicable, be given by the patient's general medical practitioner or another medical practitioner who has previous acquaintance with him;

(c)neither recommendation shall be given by a practitioner on the staff of the hospital named in the application where the patient is to be accommodated under section 57 or 58 of the National Health Service (Scotland) Act 1978 (which relates to accommodation for private patients) or in a private hospital and, subject to subsection (2) of this section, where the patient is to be accommodated otherwise one only of the recommendations may be given by such a practitioner ;

(d)such recommendations shall contain a statement as to whether the person signing the recommendation is related to the patient and of any pecuniary interest that that person may have in the admission of the patient to hospital.

(2)Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of this section, both medical recommendations may be given by practitioners on the staff of the hospital named in the application where—

(a)compliance with the said paragraph (c) would result in a delay involving serious risk to the health or safety of the patient or to the safety of other persons;

(b)one of the practitioners giving the recommendations works at the hospital for less than half the time which he is bound by contract to devote to work in the health service; and

(c)if one of the practitioners is a consultant, the other does not work (whether at the hospital or elsewhere) in a grade in which he is under that consultant's directions.

(3)For the purposes of this section a general practitioner who is employed part-time in a hospital shall not be regarded as a practitioner on its staff.