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Int J Health Care Qual Assur. 2007;20(2-3):141-60.

Quality in psychiatric care: an instrument evaluating patients' expectations and experiences.

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Department of Medicine and Care, Division of Nursing Science, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden.



The principal aim of this paper is to develop an instrument to measure quality of care in the psychiatric setting from an in-patient perspective and to describe quality of care by means of this instrument. A further aim is to investigate the influence of background variables and expectations on the experience of care.


The instrument "Quality in psychiatric care" consists of two parts: one for measuring the patient's expectations regarding quality of care, the other for measuring his or her experiences regarding it. The instrument was derived from an earlier interview study of patients' perceptions of the quality of psychiatric care. A sample of 116 patients from eight in-patient wards in Sweden participated in the present study.


Results indicate a generally high quality of care. Experienced quality of care was significantly lower, however, than expectations in all the dimensions of the instrument: total dimension, dignity, security, participation, recovery and environment. Patients who perceived that the time of discharge was consistent with the stage of their illness experienced significantly higher Recovery; patients with good psychiatric health experienced this too, but also significantly higher participation.


This new instrument needs to be further tested before the psychometric properties can be established.


The value of the research is that instruments for measuring the quality of in-patient psychiatric care from the patient's perspective and with a theoretical foundation are less common.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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