S79: Client and caregiver perspectives of engagement at entry to a first-episode psychosis service: Preliminary results of a longitudinal qualitative study.

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By September 26, 2017 No Comments

Authors: Rachel Tindall, Magenta Simmons, Kelly Allott, Bridget Hamilton

Year: 2017

Event: 2017 TheMHS Conference

Subject: Lived Experience, Recovery,Clinical Issues,Service Systems, Delivery, Implementation

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers

Abstract: Early intervention services play a crucial role in providing treatment for young people experiencing a first episode psychosis. However, on average, forty-six percent of young people disengage from treatment, which may result in untreated symptoms, difficulty returning to school or work, and relationship breakdowns (Doyle et al., 2014; Tindall, Francey, & Hamilton, 2015). This presentation will advance understanding of the issues relating to engagement in the early stages of treatment from the perspectives of young people and their primary caregivers. The data presented are based on participant responses to qualitative interviews in the first eight-weeks of treatment with an early intervention service in Melbourne, Australia. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. For young people, psychosis is a bewildering phenomenon. Initial recovery is experienced as slow and confusing. Offering practical support to address areas of perceived loss and collaboratively building an understanding of psychosis may help improve engagement. Caregivers described lengthy attempts to seek help for the young person and this took a personal toll on their health, work and relationships. Providing psycho-information and diagnosis early in treatment may improve their engagement with services. The results of this study can be used to inform clinical practice, service provision and local policies.

Learning Objectives
Learning Objective 1: The audience will gain an understanding of how young people and their primary caregivers experience initial contact with an early intervention service for first episode psychosis, and learn strategies to better engage young people and their primary caregivers in treatment.

Learning Objective 2: Treatment for mental health can only be effective if the person participates in it. As disengagement rates from services are, on average, forty-six percent, a large proportion of people are seeking help outside of public mental health services. Understanding how people experience contact with services and engagement with clinicians is therefore paramount to constructing services that are responsive to the needs of clients and their caregivers.

Doyle, R., Turner, N., Fanning, F., Brennan, D., Renwick, L., Lawlor, E., & Clarke, M. (2014). First-Episode Psychosis and Disengagement From Treatment: A Systematic Review. Psychiatric Services, 65(5), 603-611. doi:10.1176/appi.ps.201200570
Tindall, R., Francey, S., & Hamilton, B. (2015). Factors influencing engagement with case managers: Perspectives of young people with a diagnosis of first episode psychosis. Int J Ment Health Nurs, 24(4), 295-303. doi:10.1111/inm.12133

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