The treatment of ‘difficult’ patients in a secure unit of a specialized psychiatric hospital: the patient's perspective

Auteurs
B.K.G. (Berno) van Meijel, Nienke Kool, M. Bos, Bauke Koekkoek en C.J. Gamel
Onderzoekslijn
Soort object
Artikel
Datum
2011
Samenvatting
The aim of this study is to obtain insight, from a patient's perspective, into the results and essential components of treatment in specialist settings for so-called ‘difficult’ patients in mental health care. In cases where usual hospital treatment is not successful, a temporary transfer to another, specialist hospital may provide a solution. We investigated which aspects of specialist treatment available to ‘difficult’ patients are perceived as essential by the patients and what are the results of this treatment in their perception. A qualitative research design based on the Grounded Theory method was used. To generate data, 14 semi-structured interviews were held with 12 patients who were admitted to a specialist hospital in the Netherlands. Almost all respondents rated the results of the specialist treatment as positive. The therapeutic climate was perceived as extremely strict, with a strong focus on structure, cooperation and safety. This approach had a stabilizing effect on the patients, even at times when they were not motivated. Most patients developed a motivation for change, marked by a growing and more explicit determination of their future goals. We concluded that a highly structured treatment environment aimed at patient stabilization is helpful to most ‘difficult’ patients.