Section Responsible Medical Officer

Section Responsible Medical Officer

A medically qualified doctor cited in the Mental Health Act 1983 who is responsible for patients receiving compulsory treatment.

Under Section 5, paragraph 35 (of the Mental Health Act 1983), the Responsible Medical Officer “…records for the purposes of paragraph 34(3) his opinion that a patient detained in a hospital is unfit for discharge if it appears to the responsible medical officer
(1)(a) that if that patient were released from the hospital he would be likely to act in a manner dangerous to other persons or to himself, or would be likely to resort to criminal activities; or
(b) that that patient is incapable of caring for himself and that there is no suitable hospital or other establishment into which he can be admitted and where he would be likely to remain voluntarily;
and where the responsible medical officer records his opinion as aforesaid he shall also record the grounds for his opinion.
(2) Where the responsible medical officer records his opinion under this paragraph in respect of a patient, the managers of the hospital or other persons in charge of the establishment where he is for the time being detained or liable to be detained shall cause the patient to be informed, and the patient may, at any time before the expiration of the period of 28 days beginning with the date on which he is so informed, apply to a Mental Health Review Tribunal.
(3) On any application under sub-paragraph (2) above the tribunal shall, if satisfied that none of the conditions set out in paragraphs (a) and (b) of sub-paragraph (1) above are fulfilled, direct that the patient be discharged, and subsection (1) of section 72 of this Act shall have effect in relation to the application as if paragraph (b) of that subsection were omitted.”
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