Pathways to care and ethnicity. 2: Source of referral and help-seeking - Report from the AESOP study
ABSTRACT Previous research has found that African-Caribbean and Black African patients are likely to come into contact with mental health services via more negative routes, when compared with White patients. We sought to investigate pathways to mental health care and ethnicity in a sample of patients with a first episode of psychosis drawn from two UK centres.
We included all White British, other White, African-Caribbean and Black African patients with a first episode of psychosis who made contact with psychiatric services over a 2-year period and were living in defined areas. Clinical, socio-demographic and pathways to care data were collected from patients, relatives and case notes.
Compared with White British patients, general practitioner referral was less frequent for both African-Caribbean and Black African patients and referral by a criminal justice agency was more common. With the exception of criminal justice referrals for Black African patients, these findings remained significant after adjusting for potential confounders.
These findings suggest that factors are operating during a first episode of psychosis to increase the risk that the pathway to care for Black patients will involve non-health professionals.
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ABSTRACT: Specific ethnic groups appear to be disproportionally represented in emergency compulsory admissions. This may be due to a parallel higher risk of psychopathology, but different pathways to care in patients from ethnic minorities may also be an explanatory factor. In this article we concentrate on the influence of ethnic background, pathways to psychiatric emergency services and the amount of past psychiatric treatment as predictors of emergency compulsory admission. All the patients coming into contact consecutively with the Psychiatric Emergency Service Amsterdam (PESA) from September 2004 to September 2006 were included in the study. We collected socio-demographic and clinical characteristics, and data about prior use of mental health services and referral to the emergency service. The risk of compulsory admission for immigrants from Surinam and the Dutch Antilles (OR 2.6), sub-Saharan Africa (OR 3.1), Morocco and other non-Western countries (each OR 1.7) was significantly higher than for native Dutch people. After controlling for socio-demographic characteristics, diagnosis, referral pattern and psychiatric treatment history, this correlation was no longer found. We found no evidence to substantiate the hypothesis that ethnic background plays an independent role in emergency compulsory admission. Police referral rather than referral by a GP, and being diagnosed with a psychosis, seemed to be explanatory factors for the high risk of compulsory admission for non-Western immigrants. Infrequent contact with secondary mental healthcare during the previous five years was not found to be consistently associated with a higher risk.International Journal of Social Psychiatry 05/2011; 58(4):374-80. DOI:10.1177/0020764011399970 · 1.15 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: African Caribbean women are under-represented within mental health services in the United Kingdom, despite sociocontextual vulnerabilities which may increase emotional distress. This qualitative study aimed to explore individual explanatory models of experiences of distress, coping and help-seeking choices, with a view to improving cultural relevance of services. Participants were recruited following their self-referral to self-help community wellbeing workshops. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was carried out following semi-structured interviews with seven African Caribbean women in central London, who reported previously experiencing emotional distress. The study was conducted during 2009. Five super-ordinate themes emerged from the data: explanations of distress, experiences of distress, managing distress, social and cultural influences and seeking help. Each super-ordinate theme consisted of several subthemes which described participants’ experiences. Gender roles and a cultural legacy of being strong and hiding distress emerged as influential in participants’ beliefs about managing personal difficulties. However, this was balanced with an acknowledgement that intergenerational differences highlighted an increasing acceptance amongst the community of talking about issues and seeking professional support. The findings offered support for the notion that understandings and responses to personal distress are subject to broad-ranging and interwoven influences. This complexity may be conceptualised as an ‘exploratory map’ where individuals make links between their current and newly encountered knowledge and experience to guide their personal route to coping and help-seeking. The study provides support for tailoring services to individual needs using a flexible approach which empowers individuals from black and minority ethnic groups by valuing explanatory models of distress alternative to the westernised medical model. Furthermore, findings emphasise the importance of readily available and accessible information about statutory and non-statutory community resources which use language relevant to the communities they are aimed at engaging.Health & Social Care in the Community 02/2011; 19(4):392 - 402. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2524.2010.00986.x · 1.15 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: There are few evaluated psychological interventions or theoretical approaches which are specifically aimed at reducing problems related to adjustment and adaptation following a first episode of psychosis. The present study tests the efficacy of a form of CBT (Cognitive Recovery Intervention; CRI) in reducing trauma, depression and low self esteem following a first episode of psychosis, in a single-blind randomised controlled trial. A total of 66 patients who had recently experienced a first episode of psychosis were randomly assigned to CRI or treatment as usual (TAU) and followed up at 6 and 12 months. People receiving CRI tended to have lower levels of post-intervention trauma symptoms and demonstrated greater improvement than those receiving TAU alone. This was especially the case at 6 months for those with high pre-treatment levels of trauma. There was, however, no advantage for the CRI group with regards to reduced depression or improved self esteem. In conclusion, CRI appears to be an effective intervention to help young people adapt to the traumatic aspects of a first episode of psychosis although further evaluation in a larger study is warranted.Behaviour Research and Therapy 10/2006; 86(6-47):454-462. DOI:10.1016/j.brat.2009.02.009 · 3.85 Impact Factor