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The representation of service users’ religious and spiritual concerns in care plans

Walsh, Julia and MCSHERRY, Wilfred and KEVERN, Peter (2013) The representation of service users’ religious and spiritual concerns in care plans. Journal of Public Mental Health, 12 (3). pp. 153-164. ISSN 1746-5729

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Abstract or description

Purpose
– The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy with which care plans capture and make use of data on the spiritual and religious concerns of mental health service users in a UK Health and Social Care Trust.

Design/methodology/approach
– A questionnaire was given to service users (n=71) and the findings compared with the information held on their behalf by the relevant Health and Social Care Trust at three key points in the care planning process.

Findings
– The study found that the importance that many service users accorded to spirituality and religion was not reflected in the electronic records, that some information was wrong or wrongly nuanced when compared with the patient's self-description and that service users themselves were often mistaken regarding the type and quality of information held on record.

Practical implications
– The implications of these findings are discussed in relation to the process of information gathering, to the training and support of Care Coordinators and to the monitoring and revision of Care Plans. The discrepancy between the information supplied by service users and that recorded by the Trust suggests that, despite government guidance, spiritual and religious concerns are not being given consideration in the construction of care plans. Possible reasons for this oversight are discussed.

Originality/value
– Although there have been studies of the delivery of “spiritual care” in general acute care, there have been no similar studies in relation to mental health service users and their needs. The comparison of information from the service users themselves with the information recorded by the Trust provides a measure of the extent to which service user's own perspectives are being incorporated into their care plans

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B900 Others in Subjects allied to Medicine
C800 Psychology
L500 Social Work
V600 Theology and Religious studies
Faculty: Previous Faculty of Health Sciences > Social Work, Allied and Public Health
Depositing User: Peter KEVERN
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2014 11:59
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2014 11:59
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/1940

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