IMHA (Indepedent Mental Health Advocacy)

The IMHA (Independent Mental Health Advocacy) Service is provided as a statutory right for people detained under the Mental Health Act. The service was introduced as part of the Mental Health Act 2007 and ensures there is an additional safeguard for patients subject to the Act. Patients have the right to be provided with the support of a specialist advocate with the appropriate training and experience to carry out the role. The IMHA service is independent of the NHS.

Patients have the right to an advocate if they are: detained under the Mental Health Act (even if they are on leave under Section 17); are conditionally discharged; are subject to guardianship; are on a supervised community treatment order.

IMHA’s will help patients obtain information about and understand:

  • Their rights under the Act
  • The rights which other people have in relation to them under the Act
  • The particular parts of the Act which apply to them
  • Any medical treatment that they are receiving or might receive

Referrals can be made by patients or by a third party.

To make a referral please telephone 01905 27525

Our IMHA Service User Leaflet is available to download here:

If you require an Easy Read version of this leaflet it is available here

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External Links

Department of Health IMHA Information

Social Care Institute of Excellence IMHA Information

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