It is important to understand housing and mental health issues from the perspective of psychiatric survivors. This paper reports findings from a series of focus group meetings held with survivors of mental illness to address issues concerning housing preferences and housing needs.
The discussions were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using an ethnographic method of analysis. The themes that emerged related to oppression, social networks and social supports, housing conditions, poverty and finances, and accessing services. Participants described the ongoing stigma, discrimination, and poverty that reduced their access to safe, adequate housing.
They preferred independent housing where supports would be available as needed. Participants described the dilemma of having to choose between the housing they wanted and the supports they needed, since supports were often contingent upon living in a less desirable housing situation.
Nurses and other mental healthcare workers need to be aware of these issues for discharge planning, community support, and ongoing advocacy. The survivor voices need to be heard by decision-makers at various levels of government in order for housing policy to become more receptive to their realities.
"In line with findings of the present study, more than half of individuals with severe mental illness were not satisfied with their living situations (Kowalchuk 2003). They want safe, stable, affordable, and desirable housing that is appropriate for their level of functioning and located near the supports and services that they need (Forchuk et al. 2006; Kowalchuk 2003). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present descriptive study investigated the impact of socio-economic status in meeting the human rights needs among randomly selected recovered psychiatric patients (n = 100) at a tertiary care center. Data was collected through face to face interview, using structured Needs Assessment Questionnaire. The findings revealed that the participants from below poverty line were deprived of physical needs such as 'electricity facilities' (χ (2) = 6.821, p < .009) 'safe drinking water' (χ (2) = 13.506, p < .004) and purchasing medications (χ (2) = 9.958, p < .019). Conversely, participants from above poverty line were dissatisfied in emotional needs dimension i.e. 'commenting on physical appearance (χ (2) = 8.337, p < .040), afraid of family members (χ (2) = 17.809, p < .000). Thus, there is an urgent need to implement mental illness awareness campaigns and government should take active steps for providing employment, disability pension, free housing, free treatment and free transportation service for people with mental illness to attend hospital or rehabilitation centres.
Community Mental Health Journal 01/2013; 50(3). DOI:10.1007/s10597-012-9577-z · 1.03 Impact Factor
"Finally, the need for independent-living support was emphasized by the interviewees in the present study. It was previously found that most mentally ill patients wanted to stay in their own apartment (Forshuk, Nelson, & Brent Hall, 2006; Seilheimer & Doyal, 1996). Independent living was linked both to an increased sense of competence and confidence and to greater satisfaction with ones’ accommodations (Seilheimer & Doyal, 1996). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this qualitative study was to deepen the knowledge of how individuals with schizophrenia themselves describe what they need in order to increase their well-being in everyday life. Seven patients were interviewed. An open explorative approach was applied and grounded theory was used for the analysis resulting in five categories illustrating how patients with schizophrenia handle their struggle for a normal life. The patients stressed first the importance of receiving information about the disease: for themselves, for society, and for their families. Taking part in social contacts such as attending meeting places and receiving home visits were identified as important as well as having meaningful employment. They also pointed out the importance of taking part in secure professional relationships. Mainly they expressed the need for continuity in the relationships and the wish to be heard and seen by the professionals. Finally, interviewees addressed the need for support for sustaining independent living through practical housekeeping and financial help. To conclude, the participants in the present study described their need for help as mainly linked to activities in their overall life situation rather than just their psychosis.
International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-Being 02/2011; 6(1). DOI:10.3402/qhw.v6i1.5412 · 0.93 Impact Factor
"Devaluation and discrimination, as well as rejection experiences, were more weakly negatively associated to overall health, and to the subscales. It is, however, reasonable to assume that stigmatization has a considerable effect on symptoms, self-esteem and quality of life, including housing, employment and utilization of support, factors that are essential to a healthy life situation (Forchuk et al. 2006). Johnstone (2001) illustrates that the consequences of stigmatization give a high incidence of human rights violations that occur within society in general and in the healthcare sector in particular. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mental health services have been lacking systematic health-promoting activities, and health is often perceived as the absence of disease from a biomedical perspective. It is vital to develop methods to assess perceived health among patients in a broader perspective. The aim of the study was to investigate construct validity of a newly developed health questionnaire intended to measure subjectively experienced health among patients in mental health services. A cross-sectional study, including a randomly selected sample of 139 outpatients in contact with the mental health services, was performed in order to explore the relationship between perceived health and self-reported levels of self-esteem, symptoms, empowerment, quality of life and experiences of stigmatization. Self-esteem, symptoms, empowerment and quality of life altogether accounted for 70% of the variation in overall perceived health. Overall perceived health showed positive associations to self-esteem, empowerment and quality of life and negative associations to psychiatric symptoms, discrimination and rejection experiences. The findings suggest that perceived health as measured by the health questionnaire can be a meaningful and valid construct that may be useful for measuring health in clinical mental healthcare practice and in mental health services research.
Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 03/2008; 15(3):238 - 245. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2850.2007.01219.x · 0.84 Impact Factor
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