Police and mental health services in low to middle income countries

I am undertaking a PhD looking at Section 136 of the UK Mental Health Act. Section 136 is a UK based directive which permits a police officer to legally remove a person from a public place, who the officer believes to be in distress, in need of immediate care and control and transfer them to a hospital place of safety. My work looks at how this provision works from the perspectives of all stakeholders involved (i.e. service user, carer, police, mental health professional and ambulance workers). Tied in with my keen interest in global mental health, I am interested in finding out how this works in low to middle income countries (i.e. Asia and Latin America of particular interest) especially from a trans cultural psychiatric perspective. It would be good to link with anyone who is involved in this type of work and/or has an active interest in this area.


Submitted by barryrichardson on 21 October 2013 - 2:13pm.

We have found different types of health act in different sector and here we are indicating that how police gets legal permission to remove a mental patient from a public place. Definitely we should recognize the role of human right organization in these circumstances but unfortunately to maintain a protective environment in the region police takes such decisions. We hope those mental patient are getting better care and treatment in hospitals instead of their community. In my point of view it is the better way to solve problems.


Submitted by andrew bayes on 3 July 2013 - 9:53am.

On which basis may that policeman to remove the "supposed mental health distressed" person from public places? Even if there's a low which permits that, the human rights are broken. The police may calm down that person bijuterii inox, but removing it from that place without its acceptance is a power abusing act of policeman.

andrew bayes

Submitted by waternut (not verified) on 10 March 2012 - 6:39am.

I am a doctoral student and I am completing my dissertation in similar topic. My chair forwarded this link to me and thought I would be interested in sharing some aspects with you. Although my topic is not around middle income countries, it is certainly in middle income state of the US, the state of Maine. Even though Maine has certainly some high income population, the police mostly is involved with middle to very low income population. I would be glad to dialog my findings with you and compare results with you if you are interested. Certainly the political struggles may be drastically different from other countries but nevertheless the barriers our officers face with indiviudals with mental health illness are exceeding their abilities and put extensive pressure and expectations on the officers on duty.

Beata Wiktor - 10 March 2012

waternut (not verified)