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A&E experiences needed


Calling all service users with experience of treatment of self-injury in Accident & Emergency

I’m a self-harm activist with firsthand experience and I need your help.
I’m taking up the issue of defacto detainment in the ED [A&E] where treatment is made contingent on first undergoing a psychiatric assessment.
I’m referring to the withholding of medical assessment/treatment of injuries i.e. cuts/harms until we’ve “agreed” to participate in a psychiatric liaison assessment. This is illegal and discriminatory i.e. people are not denied assessment/treatment of an overdose before a psychiatric assessment and are not told they have to do this before being treated.
I need brief testimonies from anyone who’s experienced this, anonymous is fine, but if you feel able to say which part of the country you’ve experienced this I’d be grateful [but it’s not mandatory].
I’m working on this issue with the aims of 1] finding out the legal position and 2] publish the results of these findings for all service users to access.
Typically, forced psych assessment before treatment of self-injury is justified on the grounds of “it’s hospital policy” but this red herring and the use of ‘common law duty of care’ is only reasonable in ‘life threatening’ circumstances, waiting for a liaison assessment you haven’t agreed to in order to access treatment for your injuries does not constitutes a ‘life threatening’ scenario.

In addition I would also be interested in your experience of being held against your wishes in A&E after treatment of your injuries on the grounds of you can’t leave before an assessment has taken place.

Thank you
[email protected]

:icon_arrow: approved by NSHN Admin

Not come across this before - in my area you are treated and only when you are 'medically fit' will the psych teams come in to do anassessment. Often they xhoose not to come and see you

As for not being allowed to leave - if you presented as being a real danger to yourself it is quite possible for section 52 to take place even though you are in general ward.

Is this American?

Hi Jewel, my apologies I should've made it clear, we're talking about UK experiences only.

Thanks for the emails so far. Please feel free to respond by PM if that's easier for anyone who doesn't want to email.


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