Independent Mental Capacity Advocates
The Independent Mental Capacity Advocate (IMCA) service is a
newly-created resource to support the Mental Capacity Act
2005. The aim of the IMCA service is to provide independent
safeguards for people who lack capacity to make certain important
decisions and at the time when such decisions need to be
made, and have no-one else other than paid staff
to support and represent them or be consulted.
The provider of the IMCA service for
Bedfordshire is POhWER .
The criteria for referring to the IMCA are:
- The person lacks capacity, according to a
decision-specific test for capacity. There must be a written record
of this process.
- The person without capacity has no friends or
family, or where the NHS or Local Authority body deems there is
no-one appropriate or practicable to consult with on the decision
e.g. family out of the area or limited knowledge of the person
- When the person lacking capacity requires action
around ‘serious medical treatment’, which could include providing,
withholding or withdrawing treatment such as ECT for non-detained
patients, major surgery, chemotherapy, life-sustaining treatment
- When the person lacking capacity needs to change
residence, where the Local Authority propose to make changes to a
person’s residence for more than 8 weeks, or where an NHS body
propose to make changes to a person’s residence for over 28
- Adult protection issues and care review
representation can also be eligible.