An MP has praised the opening of a dedicated mental health crisis assessment unit in Hove.
Maria Caulfield, who served as a member of Brighton and Hove City Council before becoming a Member of Parliament, said that the Haven at Mill View, in Hangleton, was “most welcome”.
The Conservative MP said: “Now open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, the Haven at Mill View has been developed to provide a comprehensive assessment for adults over the age of 18 in East Sussex, West Sussex and Brighton and Hove, who are experiencing a mental health crisis.
“While not a walk-in service, the unit is a much-needed alternative to police using section 136 of the Mental Health Act to detain in a cell a person who may be a danger to themselves or others while experiencing a mental health crisis.
“Referrals can be made by South East Coast Ambulance Service, Sussex Police, Sussex Community Foundation Trust, acute hospitals via mental health liaison teams or mental health senior nurses, as well as primary care organisations.”
Mrs Caulfield, an NHS nurse who also served as a councillor for Moulsecoomb and Bevendean, said: “Too often we hear of people being detained in police cells when they are experiencing a mental health crisis and need more specialist care rather than being detained.
“A busy A&E (accident and emergency) department may also not be the best place for someone in crisis to go to.
“So having this new dedicated mental health crisis assessment unit covering all of Sussex is most welcome.
“The Haven will be able to provide those in mental health crisis from across Sussex with a safe place to be assessed by mental health experts 24 hours a day seven days a week.”