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MENTAL HEALTH ACT, 2001
Definitions (Part 5).
62. —In this Part—
“centre” means a hospital or other in-patient facility for the care and treatment of persons suffering from mental illness or mental disorder;
“the Register” means the Register of Approved Centres and cognate words shall be construed accordingly;
“registered proprietor”, in relation to a centre, means the person whose name is entered in the register as the person carrying on the centre;
“regulations” means the regulations under section 66 ;
“resident” means a person receiving care and treatment in a centre.
Prohibition of unregistered centres.
63. —(1) A person shall not carry on a centre unless the centre is registered and the person is the registered proprietor thereof and a centre which is so registered shall be known, and is referred to in this Act, as “an approved centre”.
(2) Any person who contravenes a provision of this section shall be guilty of an offence.
Registration of approved centres.
64. —(1) The Commission shall establish and maintain a register which shall be known as “the Register of Approved Centres” and is referred to subsequently in this Act as “the Register”.
(2) (a) There shall be entered in the Register in respect of each centre registered therein the name of the person by whom it is carried on, the address of the premises in which it is carried on, a statement of the number of patients who can be accommodated in the centre, the date on which the registration is to take effect (referred to subsequently in this section as “the date of registration”) and such other (if any) particulars as may be prescribed.
(b) The Register maintained under this section shall be made available for inspection free of charge by members of the public at all reasonable times.
(3) (a) The Commission may, on application to it in that behalf by a person who proposes to carry on a centre, register or refuse to register the centre.
(b) Subject to the provisions of this section, the period of a registration shall be 3 years from the date of registration.
(c) Where the Commission registers a centre it shall issue a certificate of registration to the registered proprietor thereof.
(4) The Commission may remove a centre from the register.
(5) The Commission shall not—
(a) refuse to register a centre in relation to which an application for its registration has been duly made, or
(b) remove a centre from the Register, unless—
(i) it is of opinion that—
(I) the premises to which the application or, as the case may be, the registration relates do not comply with the regulations, or
(II) the carrying on of the centre will not be or is not in compliance with the regulations,
(ii) the registered proprietor has been convicted of an offence under this Part, or
(iii) the registered proprietor has failed or refused to furnish the Commission with information requested by it pursuant to subsection (8) or has furnished the Commission with information that is false or misleading in a material particular, or
(iv) the registered proprietor has, not more than one year before the date from which the registration or removal from the register would take effect, contravened a condition under subsection (6).
(6) (a) The Commission may—
(i) at the time of registration or subsequently attach to the registration conditions in relation to the carrying on of the centre concerned and such other matters as it considers appropriate having regard to its functions under this Part,
(ii) attach different conditions to the registration of different centres, and
(iii) amend or revoke a condition of registration.
(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), conditions attached to the registration of a centre may—
(i) require the carrying out of essential maintenance or refurbishment of a centre or of specified areas within a centre,
(ii) require the closure, temporarily or permanently, of a specified area or areas within a centre,
(iii) specify the maximum number of residents which may be accommodated in a centre, or in a specified area or areas within a centre,
(iv) specify the minimum number of staff required to be employed in a centre,
(v) require the introduction or review, as the case may be, of specified policies, protocols and procedures relating to the care and welfare of patients and residents,
(vi) require the introduction or review, as the case may be, of specified policies, protocols and procedures relating to the ordering, prescribing, storing and administration of medicines,
(vii) specify measures to be taken to ensure that patients and residents are informed of their rights under this Act.
(c) Conditions imposed under this subsection or amendments and revocations under this subsection shall be notified in writing to the registered proprietor of the centre concerned.
(7) An application for registration shall be in a form specified by the Commission.
(8) (a) The Commission may request an applicant for registration or, as the case may be, a registered proprietor to furnish it with such information as it considers necessary for the purposes of its functions under this Part.
(b) A person who, whether in pursuance of a request or otherwise, furnishes information to the Commission for the purposes of this Part that is false or misleading in a material particular shall be guilty of an offence unless he or she shows that, at the time the information was furnished to the Commission, he or she was not aware that it was false or misleading in a material particular.
(9) The registered proprietor of a centre who proposes to carry on the centre immediately after the expiration of the period of registration of the centre may apply under subsection (3) to the Commission concerned not less than 2 months before such expiration for the registration of the centre and, if the Commission does not notify him or her before such expiration that it proposes to refuse to register the centre, it shall register the centre and its date of registration shall be the day following the day of such expiration.
(10) (a) Where an approved centre commences to be carried on by a person other than the registered proprietor—
(i) the centre shall thereupon cease to be registered,
(ii) the person shall (if he or she has not done so before such commencement) apply not later than 4 weeks after it to the Commission for the registration of the centre, and, if the application is granted, the date of registration of the centre shall be that of the day following the day of the cesser aforesaid,
(iii) if the application aforesaid is duly made, and is not refused then, during the period from the commencement aforesaid until the centre is registered, it shall be deemed, for the purposes of section 63 to be registered and there shall be deemed to be attached to the registration any conditions attached to the previous registration.
(b) A person who contravenes paragraph (a)(ii) shall be guilty of an offence.
(11) (a) Where the Commission proposes to refuse to register a centre, to remove a centre from the register, to attach a condition to, or amend or revoke a condition attached to, a registration, it shall notify in writing the applicant or the registered proprietor, as the case may be, of its proposal and of the reasons for it.
(b) A person who has been notified of a proposal under paragraph (a) may, within 21 days of the receipt of the notification, make representations in writing to the Commission and the Commission shall—
(i) before deciding the matter, take into consideration any representations duly made to it under this paragraph in relation to the proposal, and
(ii) notify the person in writing of its decision and of the reasons for it.
(12) A notification of a proposal of the Commission under subsection (11) shall include a statement that the person concerned may make representations to the board within 21 days of the receipt by him or her of the notification and a notification of a decision of the Commission under subsection (11) shall include a statement that the person concerned may appeal to the District Court under section 65 against the decision within 21 days from the receipt by him or her of the notification.
(13) Where, in relation to an approved centre, there is a contravention of a condition of registration, the registered proprietor shall be guilty of an offence.
65. —(1) A person, being the registered proprietor or, as the case may be, the person intending to be the registered proprietor, of an approved centre, may appeal to the District Court against a decision of the Commission to refuse to register the centre, to remove the centre from the register or to attach a condition, or to amend or revoke a condition attached, to the registration of the centre and such an appeal shall be brought within 21 days of the receipt by the person of the notification of the decision under section 64 and that court may, as it thinks proper, confirm the decision or direct the Commission, as may be appropriate, to register, or to restore the registration of, the centre, to withdraw the condition or the amendment to or revocation of a condition, to attach a specified condition to the registration or to make a specified amendment to a condition of the registration.
(2) The jurisdiction conferred on the District Court by this section shall be exercised by the judge of the District Court for the time being assigned to the district court district in which the centre concerned is situated.
(3) A decision of the District Court under this section on a question of fact shall be final.
(4) Where a notification of a decision specified in subsection (1) (other than a decision to refuse to register a centre which was not registered or deemed to be registered at the time of the relevant application for registration) is given under section 64 , then—
(a) during such period from such notification (not being less than 21 days) as the Commission considers reasonable and specifies in the notification, the centre shall be treated as if the decision had not been made and, if the decision was to refuse an application under paragraph (a) of section 64 (10) for registration, be treated as if it had been registered and the registration had attached to it any conditions attached to the relevant registration that had ceased by virtue of subparagraph (i) of the said paragraph (a), and
(b) if an appeal against the decision is brought under this section, during—
(i) the period from the end of the period aforesaid until the determination or withdrawal of the appeal or any appeal therefrom or from any such appeal, and
(ii) such further period (if any) as the court concerned considers reasonable and specifies in its decision,
the centre shall—
(I) be treated for the purposes of section 64 as if the appeal had been upheld, and
(II) if the appeal was against a decision of the Commission to refuse an application under paragraph (a) of section 64 (10) for registration, be treated as if the registration had attached to it any conditions attached to the relevant registration that had ceased by virtue of subparagraph (i) of the said paragraph (a).
(5) The Commission shall be given notice of an appeal under this section and shall be entitled to appear, be heard and adduce evidence on the hearing of the appeal.
Regulations in relation to approved centres.
66. —(1) The Minister shall, after consultation with the Commission, for the purpose of ensuring proper standards in relation to centres, including adequate and suitable accommodation, food and care for residents while being maintained in centres, and the proper conduct of centres, make such regulations as he or she thinks appropriate in relation to centres.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), regulations under this section may—
(a) prescribe requirements as to the maintenance, care and welfare of residents,
(b) prescribe requirements as to the staffing including requirements as to the suitability of members of staff of centres,
(c) prescribe requirements as to the design, maintenance, repair, cleaning and cleanliness, ventilation, heating and lighting of centres,
(d) prescribe requirements as to the accommodation provided in centres,
(e) prescribe requirements as to the establishment and maintenance of a register of residents,
(f) prescribe requirements as to the records to be kept in centres and for the examination and copying of any such records or of extracts therefrom by the Inspector,
(g) prescribe requirements as to the drawing up and carrying out by centres, so far as practicable in consultation with each resident, of an individual care plan for that resident, including the setting of appropriate goals,
(h) prescribe requirements as to the information to be provided to the Inspector,
(i) provide for the enforcement and execution of the regulations by the Commission.
(3) (a) Where, in relation to a centre, there is a failure or refusal to comply with a provision of the regulations, the registered proprietor shall be guilty of an offence.
(b) A person who fails or refuses to comply with a provision of the regulations shall be guilty of an offence.
(4) (a) Where a person is convicted of an offence under this section, the Circuit Court may, on the application of the Commission, brought not more than 6 months after the conviction or, in the case of an appeal against the conviction, the final determination of it or of any further appeal (if it is a determination affirming the conviction) or the withdrawal of any such appeal therefrom, by order declare that the person shall be disqualified during such period as may be specified in the order from carrying on the centre to which the conviction related or, at the discretion of that Court, any centre.
(b) A person in respect of whom an order is made under this subsection shall not during the period specified in the order carry on the centre specified in the order or, if the order so specifies, any centre.
(c) A person who contravenes paragraph (b) shall be guilty of an offence.
(d) Notice of an application under this subsection shall be given to the person convicted of the offence concerned and he or she shall be entitled to appear, be heard and adduce evidence on the hearing of the application.
(e) The jurisdiction conferred on the Circuit Court by this subsection shall be exercised by the judge of the Circuit Court for the time being assigned to the circuit in which the premises concerned are situated.
(5) A person who wilfully obstructs or interferes with the Inspector in the performance of functions under the regulations or who fails or refuses to comply with a requirement of the Inspector under such regulations shall be guilty of an offence.
Restriction on admission of patients.
67. —(1) Subject to sections 12 and 22, a person suffering from a mental disorder shall not be detained in any place other than an approved centre.
(2) Where, in relation to a centre, there is a contravention of this section, the person carrying on the centre shall be guilty of an offence.
Penalties under Part 5.
68. —A person guilty of an offence under this Part shall be liable—
(a) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or to both,
(b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding £50,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both.