Why am I on a Section 36? A crown court decided that you needed to be in hospital for treatment of a mental health problem. A crown court and two doctors one who is Section 12 approved and has specialist experience in the treatment and diagnosis of mental illness and a registered practitioner usually a doctor who knows you, such as your GP put you on the section. How long does it last and what happens next? You can be kept in hospital for up to 28 days at first so you can be given the treatment you need and this can be extended for further periods of 28 days, up to a maximum of 12 weeks. The mental health professional in charge of your care and treatment under the MHA is known as the Responsible Clinician or RC. At the end 28 days your responsible clinician will tell the court whether or not they think you need further treatment. In all cases you will need to go back to court. Your section will end when the court says you do not need to be in hospital any longer. This may be if your responsible clinician tells the court that you do not need further treatment or your court case may finish or you may be sentenced. Can I be medicated against my will? Yes. Medicine can be given to you with or without your consent. However your consent will always be sought. Your responsible clinician and other hospital staff will talk to you about any treatment that you need for your mental health problem. In most cases you will have to accept their advice. Can I get leave? You cannot be given leave without the agreement of the court. How can I appeal? You can ask the Court to remand you to prison or on bail instead. To help you, you can ask another doctor to examine you, to see if they will write a report saying that you do not need to be kept in hospital. You will have to pay for this yourself, and the court will then look at the report and decide whether or not you must stay in hospital. For help with an appeal speak to a member of the hospital staff or an advocate or a solicitor. What are my rights? You have certain rights when you are in hospital. These include the right to: Information about your section and the reasons for detention Information about consent to treatment Information on how to obtain the help and support of an Independent Mental Health Advocate (IMHA) Information on how to make a complaint Information about safeguarding Information about the Care Quality Commission The Mental Health Act 1983 Code of Practice The MHA Code of Practice should be followed by professionals who are involved in your care and treatment. The Code of Practice provides guidance to health professionals about the MHA and is also intended to be helpful to you, your family, carers, representatives, friends, advocates and anyone else who supports you. A copy of the code should be available on the ward for you to see.