The psychiatric decision unit as an emerging model in mental health crisis care: a national survey in England

Goldsmith, Lucy P., Anderson, Katie ORCID logoORCID:, Clarke, Geraldine, Crowe, Chloe, Jarman, Heather, Johnson, Sonia ORCID logoORCID:, Lloyd-Evans, Brynmor ORCID logoORCID:, Lomani, Jo, McDaid, David, Park, A-La, Smith, Jared A., Turner, Kati and Gillard, Steve (2021) The psychiatric decision unit as an emerging model in mental health crisis care: a national survey in England. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 30 (4) . pp. 955-962. ISSN 1445-8330 [Article] (doi:10.1111/inm.12849)

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Psychiatric decision units have been developed in many countries internationally to address the pressure on inpatient services and dissatisfactory, long waits people in mental health crisis can experience in emergency departments. Research into these units lags behind their development, as they are implemented by healthcare providers to address these problems. This is the first-ever national survey to identify their prevalence, structure, activities, and contextual setting within health services, in order to provide a robust basis for future research. The response rate was high (94%), and six PDUs in England were identified. The results indicated that PDUs open 24/7, accept only voluntary patients, provide recliner chairs for sleeping rather than beds, and limit stays to 12–72 hours. PDUs are predominantly staffed by senior, qualified mental health nurses and healthcare assistants, with psychiatry input. Staff:patient ratios are high (1:2.1 during the day shift). Differences in PDU structure and activities (including referral pathway, length of stay, and staff:patient ratios) were identified, suggesting the optimal configuration for PDUs has not yet been established. Further research into the efficacy of this innovation is needed; PDUs potentially have a role in an integrated crisis care pathway which provides a variety of care options to service users.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
Item ID: 34859
Notes on copyright: © 2021 The Authors. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing published by John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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Depositing User: Katie Anderson
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2022 11:28
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2022 11:29

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