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The Police and MH(13 Posts)
An online friend was concerned about me today and called the police to say she couldn't get hold of me. The police came round to my house and forced both side gates with a battering ram to try and find me.
Is this a normal response??? The friend doesn't know my address and phone number - how would the police have found this out? Would they have been able to access my health records?
I'm even more stressed and anxious now!
Ok, how about you give us the full story?
If you were at risk and required sectioning for your own safety, then yes the police have a right to enter. No one has accessed your medical records.
And be careful about the company you keep online.
If the police have reason to believe that something may have happened to you and are concerned for your safety they can conduct a welfare check (which can involve battering rams if they have genuine concerns that's what they need to access a property) & that is not just limited to people with mental health conditions.
The police would have been able to find your address - but they should not have been able to directly access your mental health records... However they may have made contact with your local mental health trust (sorry I haven't read any previous threats so I'm unsure if you have ever been open to them) to ascertain whether there was any foundation to your friends concerns.
In that instance the police should not have access to your records - but a minimal amount of information may have been provided by a clinician to inform their risk assessment.
Essentially if the system has been used correctly then everyone was just trying to check you were ok if that's at all reassuring (it does not necessarily mean that they were trying to section you or anything drastic) but it must have been quite scary for you at the time and I hope you're ok.
Sections 135 and 136 of the mental health act deal with policing. I think 135 deals with you in your own home, and I thought they could only detain you from your own home if a Dr or mental heath professional was involved. 136 deals with detention in a public place, if they think you are a risk to yourself or others. I'm no expert though.
In reality if your friend has asked them to do a welfare check on you I would think they would have had to be pretty worried about you to force entry. Did they knock at the door first? Is there a reason for your friend to be so concerned? Is there a history? As for your address I would think it would be pretty easy for them to find your address from the electoral role/council tax etc. I wouldn't think they would have access to your medical records, those are confidential.
Are they going to pay for the damage they caused?
Yes this is normal. If you're friend expressed concern for your life, they will break anything they have to to check on you in case you need urgent help. And no, they don't usual pay for the damage in the process.
They do not have access to your medical records, but they do have access to the restricted voters register and a few other things they can do to try to locate people through phone numbers etc. Nothing sinister.
I'm glad you're OK OP, do let your friend know you're OK too.
Thanks for the replies. I guess I just felt it was very OTT. However I have been sectioned before (not by police) and have had 3 MH admissions in the past. Would they know about this even without seeing my health records?
I wouldn't quite describe my self as at risk right now but more vulnerable and I don't think I could be sectioned at the moment. I'm just all over the place and worried about losing insight.
I have tried all avenues of getting help btw and went out to friends as a last resort. That didn't exactly go well. 😭 I have no-where to go now.
It's not impossible that they contacted mental health services to ask whether there was any likelihood you could pose a risk to yourself and may have been told that you have had admissions previously.... However data sharing principles dictate that they should only share relevant information so the police shouldn't have in's-out's and details they should literally have been told what they needed to know.
I'm sorry to hear that you're struggling to find the support that you need. Have you spoken to your friend?? Without knowing the whole situation she may have just panicked and been trying to look out for you.
Please don't give up hope that the right support is out there x
Ivy sorry you are having a hard time at the moment. Are you still under CMHT? There does often seem to be a big gap between services when you are very poorly and services when you are vulnerable. I know how important having a trusted support network around you can be if you have a tendancy to lose insight. It sounds like your friend got it wrong this time, but that there concern came from a genuine place. Would it be helpful to give them more guidance about the type of things that you would find helpful in the future rather than write off the friendship altogether.
Ok. Its probably just me. Maybe I'm ok and there isn't really a problem and they can all see that or they see something different to me?
I have a stash of meds so I'll just try some other things and hopefully it will get this crap out of my head. (NB. This is not a suicide reference. I will try a small quantity of prescription meds after checking the bnf online for interactions and doses)
I don't think anyones saying its just you, or that there isn't really a problem. There do seem to be some gaps in services. Are you still under a psychiatrist? If you are feeling like you need to play with meds asking your GP to refer you back if not currently under one sounds like a plan. Even with the bnf playing with combinations of meds sounds risky unless you have a lot of experience titrating your meds yourself.
I'm not sure if I am still under a psychiatrist. I was under a perinatal team until last June and was supposed to be transferred to the adult team. I haven't even been seen by them for the first time yet despite it being 9 months on. My GP has gone on long term sick. My HV is on her honeymoon. The crisis team said I wasn't currently eligible for support.
I live in a big City so lots of service locations, departments some things for just city residents, some for county, some for both.
I even found an access service that is supposed to link all the services and they said they'll ring me back in 12 days
Oh dear it sounds like you are falling in the gaps of an overstretched service.There must be a GP covering for yours whilst they are sick. Could you ask them to chase the adult team referal 9 months seems an incredibly long wait.
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