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user led mental health advocacy

Statutory Independent Mental Health Advocacy

The Independent Mental Health Advocacy (IMHA) service is provided under the Mental Health Act and came in to force April 1st 2009. This is a statutory service which entitles people who are subject to sections under the Mental Health Act to have an advocate. The principles of this advocacy service are the same as the general user-led advocacy service that we provide, i.e. we only work with people who wish us to, and we only represent their views and wishes. It is not the IMHA’s role to represent views based on ‘best interests'.


Who has the right to an 'IMHA'

If some one is:

Detained under the Mental Health Act including S17 leave

Conditionally discharged restricted patient under S37/41

Subject to Guardianship under S7

Subject to a Supervised Community Treatment Order S17a

People detained under S4, S5(2), S5(4), S135 or S136 are NOT entitled to an IMHA


Informal patients are entitled to an IMHA if they are:

Being considered for treatment under S57

Under 18 and being considered for ECT


For further information about how an advocate can support you please click on one of the following links:


If you are a professional, please click here