11 January 2018

Update on Wiltshire Place of Safety plans

Due to quality issues identified by the Care Quality Commission following an inspection of the Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (AWP) in 2016 and 2017, NHS England has authorised the temporary consolidation of two of three Health Based Places of Safety (HBPoS) Suites in Swindon and Salisbury to a third site in Devizes in Wiltshire for 12 months. This will provide an opportunity to address the CQC improvement requirements, particularly around assessment times. A key element of this will be to support the delivery of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 that amended the Mental Health Act to reduce the maximum period someone can be detained on a Section 135/6 from 72 to 24 hours"

During the period of temporary reallocation, engagement will be undertaken with the populations of Swindon and Wiltshire and individuals using the service. This will then lead to recommendations to NHS England and NHS Improvement.

Longer term arrangements in relation to these HSPoS suites will be subject to an NHS England assurance process.

A Health Based Place of Safety is not an admission ward. An individual may be detained using the 1983 Mental Health Act for the purposes of assessing whether that person has a mental disorder and if so whether they require further assessment or treatment. People at a place of safety are in crisis and usually highly distressed. Most are presenting a risk to themselves and sometimes to others. People detained are not patients; they are detainees until a decision is made whether they have a mental disorder that requires further assessment or treatment or not. A bed is available in the S136 suite not as a bedroom, but to allow rest.

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