Relating on psychiatric inpatient units

Cheetham, John L.H. (2014) Relating on psychiatric inpatient units. D.Clin.Psychol. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University.

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Research has shown interpersonal relationships to influence experiences of inpatient psychiatric services. This study explored staff and service-users’ talk about relating, and consequences of available/limited social actions.
A Foucauldian discourse analysis was used to analyse transcripts from semi-structured interviews and focus groups with current inpatient staff members and service-users with prior experience of being a psychiatric inpatient.
Two focus groups (service-users n=10; staff n=6) and five interviews (service-users n=2; staff n=3) were held, with participants responding to questions regarding the discursive object of ‘experiences of relating on inpatient wards’.
A dominant ‘medical-technical-legal discourse’ was seen, with two counter-discourses of ‘ordinary humane relating’, and ‘person-centred’. A ‘civil rights’ discourse was drawn on by service-users in the tensions between discourses.
The study concluded that the medical-technical-legal discourse perpetuates notions of mental illness as impenetrable to relating. Fearing of causing harm and staff positions of legal accountability generates mistrust, obstructing relating. Ordinary humane relating was vital for service-users in regaining a sense of self. Through ordinary humane relating, a therapeutic relationship could develop, as constructed through a person-centred discourse.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: relating, interpersonal relationships, psychiatric services, inpatient services, staff, service-users, discourses
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology > HM1001 Social psychology > HM1106 Interpersonal relations. Social behavior
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA0790 Mental health services. Mental illness prevention
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0435 Psychiatry
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Applied Psychology
Depositing User: Mrs Kathy Chaney
Date Deposited: 21 Oct 2014 08:17
Last Modified: 24 Mar 2018 17:51

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00