are 'more trusted'
by Samantha Clarke
are becoming more trusted by their patients, according to a national
in ten (63%) of community psychiatric patients said this year they
definitely had trust and confidence in their psychiatrist. This
is up from 59% in 2004.
in ten (9%) of community patients said they had no trust and confidence
in their psychiatrist.
82% of community patients say their psychiatrist definitely treats
them with “dignity and respect”. This is up from 79%
from 2004. Only 3% said their psychiatrist did not.
results were from an annual Healthcare
Commission survey of 14,000 patients living in the community
survey reported that 86% of patients said they were definitely treated
with respect and dignity by their community psychiatric nurse. Two
per cent said they were not.
the survey revealed that almost half (45%) of service users had
no access to a crisis number to call out-of-hours.
four in ten (40%) said they were definitely told about possible
side effects of their medication. This was up from 36% from 2004.
Three in ten (32%) said they were not told of any side effects,
down from 35% in 2004.
Anna Walker, chief executive of the Healthcare Commission, said
the survey showed a "steady improvement" in how service
users rate key aspects of their care.
Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of the mental health charity Sane
said: "Nine years ago, we were given guidelines which said
that people with severe mental illness should be able to access
appropriate services 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This report
shows we still have a long way to go."
Professor Louis Appleby, the national director for mental health,
said the results showed "hugely encouraging" improvements.
he added: "We are still making improvements including giving
people more choice in the way they are treated.
programme of expanding psychological therapies, backed with £173m
in funding by the third year, will help achieve this."
The Healthcare Commission's
2008 National NHS patient survey of users of community mental health
not such good news?
Allan House, professor of psychiatry, Leeds University
September 14, 2008
It's welcome news that there are plenty of people out there who
have positive things to say about their contact with psychiatry.
as for the claim that things are improving I didn't find the survey
results easy to interpret, the main reason being to do with lack
of clarity about who responded. I had two problems.
the numbers of respondents in 2008 were only about 1/2 those in
2004. That means that either the response rate was much lower in
the latest round, or the sampling procedure was different. In either
case it raises a question about the value of comparing across samples.
the important figure is not just number of respondents but the proportion
of those approached who responded, the so-called response rate.
lower the response rate, the more one has to ask what distinguishes
those who replied from those who didn't. It isn't difficult to imagine
that one answer might be "how fed up they were with psychiatric
services", the more fed-up people (perhaps) voting with their
feet and not replying.
striking, for example, that if you look at trends year-on-year,
the number of respondents goes down each year while the % satisfied
respondents goes up.This
problem is known as response or respondent bias. It doesn't mean
nobody is happy with their care (clearly lots of people are) it
simply means you can't be sure what proportion of all patients are,
and whether there is really an annual improvement.
answer may be in the technical reports accompanying the main survey
but I couldn't find it (although not all the links worked). Without
being able to check, its tempting to regard this as a Good News
press release based upon incomplete evidence.
the problem with some hyperlinks on the Healthcare Commission's
survey are something psychminded
can not rectify.
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