Assert Advocacy is independent of NHS and Social Services and separate from other parts of the Charity. Advocates help the client to express their own views and needs to the people who make decisions about their lives.
We aim to protect people’s rights, give them information, and promote informed choice. We work with adults living in Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and surrounding rural areas who have a mental health diagnosis, and with formal and informal patients. You can contact us yourself, or be referred by a GP, Trust staff, social services or carer.
The important thing is that the person themself feels that advocacy would be helpful, and agrees to our involvement.At our first visit, which can be anywhere the person feels is convenient home, ward, or a local café, we will talk through the problems and discuss how to work on them.
As appropriate, we will signpost people to other services, help them obtain professional advice, or agree a series of actions. The advocate will then work in partnership with the client until the issue is resolved or the client decides on a different course.
If the person is detained under the Mental Health Act 83 or subject to recall to hospital – for example, under Guardianship or Community Treatment Order – they have a right to an Independent Mental Health Advocate.
IMHAs help explain to patients how the law applies to them and how to participate in, or appeal against, the plans made for their care and treatment.
Just as with other clients, the IMHA will also help with general rights related to benefits, debt, housing or children and families.
If you have been sectioned in hospital or under guardianship you have a right to an Independent Mental Health Advocate (IMHA). Ask ward staff or your Care Manager to contact us.
To download our Assert leaflet please click here.