A security patient is a patient subject to a secure treatment order or a court secure treatment order.
An authorised psychiatrist may make a written direction that a security patient is to be transported to another designated mental health service if:
a) the authorised psychiatrist is satisfied it is necessary for the security patient's treatment; and
b) it is approved by the authorised psychiatrist for the designated mental health service which will provide the treatment.
The chief psychiatrist can also direct an authorised psychiatrist to arrange for a security patient to be transferred to another designated mental health service if they are satisfied it is necessary for the patient’s treatment.
When a security patient has been the subject of a direction to transport them to another designated mental health service, they can apply to the Mental Health Tribunal for a review of the direction within 20 business days of the direction being made.
The Tribunal must hear and determine an application for review as soon as is practical after the application is made.
What will the Tribunal decide?
The Tribunal must:
a) refuse the security patient’s application and confirm the direction to transfer them to another designated
mental health service if the Tribunal is satisfied that transporting the security patient to another designated mental health
service is necessary for the patient's treatment, or
b) grant the security patient’s application and overturn the direction to transfer them to another mental health service if the
Tribunal is not satisfied that transporting the security patient to another designated mental health service is necessary
for the patient's treatment.
If the Mental Health Tribunal grants the application and overturns the direction and the security patient has been transported to another designated mental health service, the Tribunal must direct that the security patient be returned to the original designated mental health service.
If the Mental Health Tribunal refuses the application and confirms the direction, the security patient must be transported to the receiving designated mental health service.
How a security patient can apply to the Tribunal
A security patient can apply for a review of a direction to take them to another health service by completing the MHWA 114 Application to the Mental Health Tribunal form and sending it to the Tribunal by:
Fax: (03) 9032 3223
Post: Level 30, 570 Bourke Street Melbourne VIC 3000
What the health service must do
Write a report for the patient and the Tribunal
The authorised psychiatrist who made the direction to transport the patient (or their delegate) must complete a report for the Tribunal hearing as soon as is practical and provide copies to the Tribunal and the patient.
The patient should be provided with a copy of the report at least 2 business days before the hearing.
The report should be written using the Tribunal’s Report for application for review of direction to take a security patient to another health service (MHT 44).
Provide other relevant documents
In addition to the report template the health service must also provide:
- The completed MHWA 156 Transfer of security or forensic patient form
- The approval of the authorised psychiatrist at the health service the patient would be transported to (this is not required if the transfer was directed by the chief psychiatrist).
- A copy of the relevant order that establishes the Tribunal’s jurisdiction.
- The other documents specified in Practice Note 4, being:
- Latest discharge or admission summaries
- Consultant notes in date order for the last three reviews
- Notes from registrar/medical officer reviews in date order during the three months prior to the hearing
- Notes from case manager reviews in date order during the three months prior to the hearing
- Nursing notes for up to a month preceding a hearing held during an inpatient admission
- Advance Statement of Preferences
- Nominated Support Person form
- Second psychiatric opinion report
- Correspondence from private/specialist practitioners or general practitioners
- Forensic, social work, occupational therapy, psychological and neuropsychological reports
- Any reports related to additional therapeutic interventions offered by the service
- Information about non-clinical or community supports involved in the person's care
- CMI records
- Any other documents which the treating team believes are relevant to the hearing.
These documents should also be made available to the patient at least 2 business days before the hearing.
Attend the Tribunal hearing
The authorised psychiatrist who directed that the patient be transported to the other health service (or their delegate) must attend the hearing.
Other staff involved in the patient’s treatment are also encouraged to attend.
How the patient can prepare for the hearing
The patient can prepare for the hearing by:
- asking someone to help them prepare or to attend the hearing with them like a family member, friend, lawyer or advocate (see Find someone to help);
- reading the report prepared for the hearing;
- planning what they want to say about whether being transported to the other health service is necessary for their treatment.
The health service should support the patient to prepare for the hearing.