Diversion schemes

In some magistrates' courts, regular attendance by psychiatrists or other trained staff allows psychiatrically disturbed persons coming before the court to be diverted as appropriate from the criminal justice system into the health-care system. Diversion also happens at an even earlier stage; for example, the custody sergeant at a police station may ask the police surgeon to examine an arrested person, and, if a mental disorder is present, the help of local psychiatric services is sought. Section 136 of the Mental Health Act also assists: it provides for someone who is disturbed in a public place to be taken to a place of safety for an assessment of their mental health.

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