Appointment of Second Opinion Appointed Doctors (SOADs)
Current List of Approved SOADs
A list of approved SOADs, can be accessed here
How to Apply - Application Forms
If you would like to apply to become a SOAD or require further information, you can access application forms and guidance notes online here.
If you require further information please contact the Mental Health and Learning Disability Team on 028 9536 1111, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Appointment to the RQIA List of SOADs
The power to appoint to the RQIA List of SOADs is vested in RQIA following the transfer of functions from the former Mental Health Commission under Article 25(1) Health and Social Care (Reform) Act (Northern Ireland) 2009.
Medical Practitioners at Consultant Psychiatrist level with specialist experience in the diagnosis or treatment of mental disorder, who meet the conditions set out by RQIA, are eligible to apply for appointment to the RQIA List of SOADs.
The suitability of each applicant is considered by RQIA with account taken of the relevant experience, training, professional standing, qualifications and indemnity of the practitioner. Approval of appointment is not automatic.
SOADs, appointed by RQIA, are authorised to provide second opinion in relation to Part IV of the Mental Health (Northern Ireland) Order 1986.
A form 23 shall be submitted by a Medical Practitioner who has been appointed by RQIA for the purposes of Part IV of the Mental Health (Northern Ireland) Order 1986.
RQIA will remunerate Medical Practitioners for providing a second opinion and any travelling expenses incurred in fulfilling this function in line with nationally agreed terms and conditions.
Responsibilities of RQIA
RQIA will ensure that Medical Practitioners who apply to be appointed to the RQIA List of SOADs meet the eligibility criteria for appointment.
RQIA will process all personal data or sensitive personal data (as both terms are defined in the Data Protection Act 1998) in accordance with that Act; and any such other conditions as RQIA deems appropriate.
The Appointment Panel
An RQIA Board appointed Panel meets to consider applications for appointment to the RQIA List of SOADs. The Appointment Panel will make a determination of an application for appointment. Medical Practitioners will usually be approved for four years.
Medical Practitioners appointed to the RQIA List of SOADs will receive a letter confirming the appointment and the duration of appointment. A certificate with the RQIA seal will also be issued to the Medical Practitioner.
Responsibilities of SOADs
All Medical Practitioners who intend to carry out any duties relating to the Mental Health (Northern Ireland) Order 1986 must ensure they are approved by RQIA before carrying out any duties.