Rise in Mental Health Act detentions shows 'services struggling to cope' (UK)

Mental health campaigners have expressed concern that detentions under the Mental Health Act have risen by almost 10% in England in the past year.

A total of 25,117 patients were subject to the act – up 6.7% from 2014 – of whom 19,656 were detained in hospitals, according to figures released on Friday by by the government’s Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC).

These people were detained a total of 58,399 times, an increase of 9.8% on 2013/14.

The mental health charity, Mind, said the figures suggested “people are not getting help for their mental health problems early enough, meaning they become more unwell and more likely to reach crisis point”.

“Being detained under the Mental Health Act is very serious and is only done when someone is extremely unwell. Every effort should be made to engage people in their care and the Act should only be used as a last resort,” the mental health charity said in a statement.