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Compulsorily Detained Mental Patients

Health written question – answered on 8th May 2008.

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Photo of Philip Davies Philip Davies Conservative, Shipley

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS beds were available for patients sectioned under mental health legislation in each of the last five years.

Photo of Ivan Lewis Ivan Lewis Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health) (Care Services)

National health service beds are not strictly allocated for patients detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 or other mental health legislation. A person detained under mental health legislation will be allocated an available mental health bed, in a suitable facility.

Data about the availability of mental health beds is shown in the following table.

The year on year reduction in mental health bed numbers reflects the increasing provision by the national health service in England of treatment for patients with mental health conditions in primary care and community settings, without the need for hospital admissions.

Average daily number of beds available for acute mental health services in the NHS in England
2002-03 32,753
2003-04 32,252
2004-05 31,286
2005-06 29,802
2006-07 27,914

Department of Health form KH03

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