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Compulsory mental care

The Compulsory Mental Care Act allows seriously mentally ill people to be taken into care against their wishes.

Only persons suffering from a serious mental disturbance can be cared for against their will. Furthermore, it must be necessary, considering the person's mental condition and personal circumstances, that he or she receives mental care at a hospital with qualified care around the clock. There must, for example, be a risk to the individual's own life or health or for the safety, physical or mental health of other persons. It is also required that the person does not wish to be cared for in this way.

In order to be taken into compulsory care, it is required that an accredited physician conducts a special examination and then issues a physician's certificate (a care certificate). After the admission, the chief physician at the psychiatric department must make a decision on compulsory care within 24 hours. If the chief physician considers that the treatment should last for more than four weeks, the chief physician must apply to the administrative court for continuation of compulsory care. Compulsory mental care can, following examination by the administrative court, continue for a maximum of four months calculated from the date on which the commitment decision was reached. Following an application by a senior consultant, the administrative court can grant an extension of the compulsory mental care for a maximum of six months on each occasion.

Forensic mental care

A person who has committed an offence can, in certain cases, be sentenced to forensic mental care. The preconditions for this form of care are similar to those applicable for compulsory mental care. Forensic mental care can be provided with or without a decision regarding a separate discharge review. In the first-mentioned case the matter of discharge must be the subject of a review by the administrative court, following an application by a senior consultant or the patient. Forensic mental care also requires a decision by the administrative court on whether the period of care is to be extended. Following submission of an application or notification such a review must take place every six months.

Appeals against compulsory care decisions

A decision by the administrative court on compulsory care can be appealed against to the administrative court of appeal. The judgment of the administrative court will explain what one should do.

Read more under the menu 'Legal proceedings/Public authority decisions.




Senast ändrad: 2010-02-12