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National Statistics
Publication, Part of

Inpatients Formally Detained in Hospitals under the Mental Health Act 1983 and Other Legislation - 1997-1998 to 2007-2008

Official statistics, National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
Geographical Granularity:
Date Range:
01 Apr 1997 to 31 Mar 2008


This annual publication summarises information about people detained under the 1983 Mental Health Act in NHS facilities, including high security psychiatric hospitals, and independent hospitals.

A new table has been added this year which provides details of changes in legal status for patients in independent hospitals (Table 7b).

Key Facts

Year to date 31 March 2008

  • the number of detentions under the Act rose to 47,600 in 2007-08 from 46,500 in 2006-07. Formal admissions rose to 28,100 in 2007-08 from 27,700 in 2006-07
  • 93 per cent of all formal admissions in 2007-08 were to NHS hospitals. This compares with 92 per cent in 2006-07
  • in 2007-08 there were 19,500 detentions after informal admission to hospital, of which 2 per cent took place in an independent hospital. This compares with 18,800 in 2006-07
  • the number of Place of Safety Orders involving assessment in hospital increased by 17 per cent from 6,400 in 2006-07 to 7,500 in 2007-08. This followed a 8 per cent rise in 2006-07 and an 16 per cent rise in 2005-06
  • in 2007-08, 71 per cent of all place of safety orders in NHS facilities ended in an informal status and this represents a drop from 74 per cent in 2006-07
  • court and prison disposals were 1,917 in 2007-08, having risen 3.3 per cent compared to 2006-07 (1,855)
  • at 31 March 2008, there were 15,200 patients detained in hospital, of which 12,300 were in NHS facilities and 2,900 in independent hospitals. The number in independent hospitals shows a decrease of 6 per cent from 2006-07.


Comparisons with information in The Mental Health Bulletin, published 29 october 2008

Inpatients formally detained in hospitals under the Mental Health Act 1983 and other legislation: 1997-98 to 2007-08 (the KP90 publication) is published at the same time as the first report and experimental statistics from Mental Health Minimum Dataset (MHMDS). In relation to the Mental Health Act the KP90 publication is the authoritative source of statistics, whilst The Mental Health Bulletin findings are experimental statistics.

There are differences between the number of formal admissions reported in the KP90 publication and the number of people detained in hospital during the year reported in the Mental Health Bulletin. Some differences may be accountable to different data sources and the experimental nature of the analyses presented in the Mental Health Bulletin. However there are also fundamental differences in the services covered by both publications and in what is being counted. The KP90 publication includes data from some services which do not complete the MHMDS including * learning disability services * high secure hospitals * Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and * independent hospitals.

it should be noted too that the KP90 counts Mental Health Act events or 'uses' of the Mental Health Act, whilst the Mental Health Bulletin statistics count people who are subject to the Act. One person can be formally admitted more than once and in more than one provider organisation during a single year but will only be counted once per year in the Mental Health Bulletin.


Last edited: 11 April 2018 4:23 pm