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Mental Capacity Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

Section 216 - Duration of direction under section 214

This section provides that a hospital transfer direction under section 214 ceases to have effect in certain circumstances. The direction ceases to have effect, if it has not done so already, at the end of the period of liability to detention. The Department of Justice must also direct by warrant that the individual be returned to custody, with the hospital direction ceasing to have effect upon their return, if it has received a relevant notification by a suitable medical practitioner. The medical practitioner must be of the opinion that the individual does not have or is no longer suffering from the disorder which precipitated the direction; it is more likely than not that if the person was transferred from hospital, no serious physical or psychological harm to him or her or serious physical harm to other persons would result from the cessation of treatment as an in-patient; or that no effective treatment for the individual’s disorder can be provided in hospital.

The section also provides that the duty does not apply if (having received a relevant notification) the Department of Justice directs that with effect from a specified date the person is to be treated as if he or she had been removed to the hospital under a relevant provision and that the hospital direction is to cease to have effect. “Relevant provision” is defined in the case of a civil prisoner as section 16(2) of the Prison Act (Northern Ireland) 1953, and in the case of an immigration detainee as either section 16(2) of the Prison Act (Northern Ireland) 1953 or Part 8 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.

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