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J Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs. 2008 Oct;15(8):684-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2850.2008.01288.x.

Mental illness: diagnostic title or derogatory term? (Attitudes towards mental illness) Developing a learning resource for use within a clinical call centre. A systematic literature review on attitudes towards mental illness.

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  • South Central Ambulance NHS Trust, UK. sue.putman@twoshires.nhs.uk


With one in three people likely to experience mental health problems during their lifetime, it is paradoxical that stigma and negative attitudes towards mental illness are so prevalent in the UK today. This systematic literature review was completed to investigate what the most common negative attitudes towards mental illness are, and the most common recommendations made to address them. The findings were used to inform teaching resources used in an National Health Service Direct call centre. Guidelines for undertaking a systematic review, produced by the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination, were used. Terms were set and a search of electronic databases and peer-reviewed academic journals was completed, from which 16 primary research papers (from the UK) were obtained and used. These were assessed, using evidence-based critical appraisal tools, to obtain data pertinent to the original question. This paper describes the process, including a detailed account of the methodologies employed to gather and analyse relevant data. Put into context, alongside key drivers (e.g. government papers), the findings are presented and discussed, along with underlying theories, where appropriate. Recommendations for professional practice are then presented.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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