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Care Act

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Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy (IMCA)

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An IMCA is someone who speaks up for you.

They do this if you do not have family or friends who can do this for you.


An IMCA is there to help when important decisions have to be made about you by the NHS or Dudley Council.

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Doctors, care home managers and health or social care professionals must get you an IMCA if:

  • You are not able to make a decision yourself

  • You do not have anyone who can help you make that decision.

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The decisions that an IMCA can help you with are:

  • Serious medical treatment like an operation.

  • A move to hospital that will be for more than 28 days.

  • A move to a care home that will be more than 8 weeks.

  • Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards, which means that you might need to live in a certain place to keep you safe, or to keep others safe. They are in place to make sure that you are looked after.

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An IMCA may also be able to help you with safeguarding.

This is when you or someone you know feels that you are not safe.

It might also be if someone thinks that you are hurting other people.

You would need an IMCA even if you have family or friends who can help you.

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An IMCA will talk to you and listen to you. They will try to find out things about you such as:

  • What you want

  • What you like

  • What you do not like

  • Any beliefs that you have

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Your IMCA will try to work out what you would choose if you were able to make the decision yourself.

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Your IMCA will speak up for you in meetings where decisions are being made. This is to make sure that the best decision is made.

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Your IMCA will talk to staff that work with you to find out what they think is best.


The IMCA will write a report about what they have found out and send this to the decision maker, this could be a doctor or Dudley Council.

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The decision maker must read the report and think about what it says. Then the decision maker will make the final decision.

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The IMCA can:

  • Meet you on your own

  • Read your social and medical records

  • Ask other medical professionals for their views about the decision

  • Ask questions about the decision or disagree with it.

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The IMCA cannot:

  • Make the decision

  • Do the test to see if you can make your own decisions and choices

  • Tell you what to do

  • Decide who the right people are to talk to about the decision.

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If you need to talk to your IMCA then you can call this number:


01384 456877

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