Responsibility for detention from the community

Access to advice from Mental Health and Learning Disability Services will be through the Community Mental Health Team or Learning Disability Teams (in cases where the patient is already receiving psychiatric care and treatment in the community) or through MHAATS (where the patient is not known to community services or during out of hours).

MHAATS: 01324-567250
Woodlands: 01324-624111
Livilands: 01786-446913
Clackmannanshire Resource Centre: 01259-290343
Older Adults Falkirk: 01324-673811
Older Adults Stirling: 01786-454665
Older Adults Clackmannanshire: 01259-290392
Forensic: 01324-616211
CAMHS: 01786-454546
Learning Disability Services: 01324-574380
Dementia Outreach Team: 01324-832610, or 01786-454665

When a psychiatric emergency occurs in the community:

The primary care service should, if possible, contact the appropriate secondary care psychiatric services whenever there is a potential need for detention.

Patients open to CHMT:

Mon-Fri 9am-5pm: contact CHMT

Out of Hours: Sat-Sun and public holidays: Contact MHAATS

Patients not open to CMHT:

Mon-Fri 9am-5pm and out of hours: contact MHAATS

Responsibilities of professionals in effecting detention

  • The patient should be seen by specialist mental health services as quickly as possible
  • Discussion between the GP and specialist mental health services must normally take place as soon as is practicable.
  • Psychiatric staff should remember that a GP may find himself/herself in a difficult or risky situation and that he/she will need direct and immediate access by phone to specialist Mental Health advice.

Emergency mental health act assessment

Emergency mental health act assessments should be completed on the same working day.

If assessment is delayed: (e.g. because patient is unwell but not yet in need of detention), the rational for the delay must be documented in the patients medical records.

Emergency mental health act assessments should be prioritised over routine clinical work. (Routine clinical work to be re-allocated/rescheduled in accordance with clinical risk.

GPs should consider the least restrictive option, e.g. community treatment, before considering detention.




  • STDC is the preferred form of detention within normal working hours.
  • EDC should only be used for out-of-hours emergencies.
  • All EDCs will be reviewed by a consultant psychiatrist within 24hours.

Once a detention certificate is completed, the certifying doctor (GP or AMP) must contact the Duty Doctor or Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ANP) in FVRH by telephoning 01324-567250 or paging 2005 and advise them of the detention.

In case of disagreement between the certifying medical practitioner and the approved medical practitioner:

  • The certifying practitioner should proceed to an EDC so that admission is arranged without delay.
  • If there is disagreement between certifying practitioner and the AMP, the AMP should either assess the patient directly or the certifying practitioner should proceed to EDC, with MHO consent.

Editorial Information

Last reviewed: 28/05/2021

Author(s): Julia Ferrari, Joe McGhee, Duncan Westall, William McFadden, Heather Tainsh , Susan Sutherland, Marie White , Anne Cook, Justin McNicholl, Douglas Armstrong, Dr Nabila Muzaffar, Dr Stuart Affleck, Dr David Cumming, Andrew Angus, Jackie Maher, Rose Mills, Vincent Hughes..