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A survey of psychiatrists' attitudes towards the physical examination

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posted on 2015-06-05, 08:55 authored by Jonathan Murray, Sarah Baillon, Janet Bruce, Latha Velayudhan
Background: Studies have shown that most psychiatric patients do not receive a thorough physical examination (PE). Methods: Psychiatrists working with Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust were surveyed to determine factors influencing the performance of PEs, including their attitudes toward conducting them. Results: Responses from 118/192 (61%) psychiatrists showed that most (96%) believe that the PE is important. The majority (72%) indicated that their PE skills had diminished since working in psychiatry and this was reported more by senior psychiatrists compared to junior trainees (85% vs 40%). 77% considered that a patient’s mental state should have a bearing on the type of PE the psychiatrist performs. Conclusions: Likely reasons for poor performance of PEs include: shortage of time and equipment, challenges associated with agitated or uncooperative patients, and possibly a degree of skill atrophy, especially in senior psychiatrists. Further research is needed to investigate if strategies addressing these factors would improve the standard of PEs on psychiatric patients.

History

Citation

Journal of Mental Health, Early Online: 1–6

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF MEDICINE, BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES AND PSYCHOLOGY/School of Medicine/Department of Health Sciences

Version

  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Published in

Journal of Mental Health

Publisher

Informa Healthcare

issn

0963-8237

eissn

1360-0567

Acceptance date

2015-05-08

Copyright date

2015

Available date

2016-07-17

Publisher version

http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/09638237.2015.1057320

Language

en

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