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A qualitative meta-synthesis of patients’ experiences of assessment and detention

A qualitative meta-synthesis of patients’ experiences of assessment and detention under mental health legislation

Syeda Ferhana Akther, Emma Molyneaux, Ruth Stuart, Sonia Johnson, Alan Simpson & Sian Oram

In order to improve policy and practice, understanding the perspective of a patients’ assessment and detention under mental health legislation is crucial. Previously, two reviews have synthesised evidence on patients’ experiences of involuntary admission being both positive and negative but these reviews employed a limited search strategy and thus, this study will provide a more comprehensive research with a more broader search strategy including studies not just in English, studies with detainment in certain settings and including papers focusing on patient perspectives with specific diagnoses. It is important to understand the patients’ perspective to explore possible ways to reduce negative impacts of detention. The study reviewed 56 papers to synthesise qualitative evidence on patients’ experiences of being formally assessed for involuntary admission and the experience of detention in a psychiatric hospital. 

PPI: Members of the Lived Experience Working Group (LEWG) were involved in the thematic analysis of the study as the thematic framework was shared with LEWG and their comments and feedback were valued.


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