Mental disorders after critical illness: depression, PTSD and functional disability in survivors of intensive care

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The BRAIN-ICU prospective cohort study published in the Lancet Respiratory Medicine looks at mental health outcomes and functional disabilities in a general ICU population. It explores the hypothesis that depressive symptoms after discharge are more often somatic (i.e. bodily complaints) than cognitive-affective (i.e. thought-related and mood-related complaints).

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Joint crisis plans: cost-effective for whom?

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Chris Sampson looks at the economic outcomes of a recent RCT of joint crisis plans to reduce compulsory treatment for people with psychosis. The study reports the potential for gains specifically among Black patients.

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Lifetime risk of treated mental disorders

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This new study concludes that approximately one-third of the Danish population will receive treatment in secondary care for a mental disorder across their lifetime. Should we be talking about 1 in 3, rather than 1 in 4?

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The cost-effectiveness of liaison psychiatry: the case of RAID

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Liaison psychiatry brings together medical and psychiatric staff in hospital wards and emergency departments, with the aim of more adequately addressing comorbidities between physical and mental health. It’s something that’s been discussed in the Woodland before, with recommendations for wider implementation. The Guardian recently published an article discussing the findings of a recent study and [read the full story...]

Critical illness and risk of psychiatric diagnosis

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Out in the woodland we are pleased that recent advances in medical care mean that more patients are surviving critical illnesses within intensive care units (ICU).  “But what does that have to do with the Mental Elf?” I hear you say. Well, we Mental Elves are wondering whether this advancement in medical technology and technique are actually putting people [read the full story...]

Community treatment orders simply don’t work

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Community Treatment Orders (CTOs) were introduced in the UK in the last revisions of the Mental Health Act. They are highly controversial, and unpopular amongst the mental health community. They clearly impact on an individual’s Human Rights. Interestingly, they cannot enforce a treatment but can require an individual to return to hospital or a place of treatment. [read the full story...]

Systematic review finds no good evidence to restrict the freedom of people with mental health problems

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Compulsory community treatment (CCT) is a method used in many industrialized nations, including the UK and Australia, that allows clinicians to legally oblige those with severe mental illness to comply with treatment in the community and can allow clinicians to recall them to hospital merely because they are not compliant with an aspect of treatment [read the full story...]

Does staying in hospital longer make you better?

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De-institutionalisation, the advent of community care and development of psychotropic medicines are implicated in the reduction in hospital bed numbers and mean length of stay. There remains a huge variance in length of stay and outcomes across the UK and beyond (NHS Confederation, 2011). Figures on length of stay and service configuration are difficult to [read the full story...]

People who died by suicide are more likely to have been last discharged from a general hospital

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Suicide is a significant public health concern in the UK and globally. Recently it was reported that the UK male suicide rate in 2012 was 3.5 times that of women (Siddique, 2014). In 1981, when the data series these reports were based on began, the male suicide rate was 1.9 times that for women. However, overall [read the full story...]

Liaison Psychiatry for all!!

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When I am not being an elf, I am very proud to work within Liaison Psychiatry and to be actively developing Liaison services across Kent and Medway. For those of you who haven’t come across Liaison before,  we work within the overlapping area between physical health and mental health, so dealing with physical health problems and [read the full story...]