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Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2011 Oct;46(10):1045-53. doi: 10.1007/s00127-010-0264-5. Epub 2010 Jul 3.

What makes community psychiatric nurses label non-psychotic chronic patients as 'difficult': patient, professional, treatment and social variables.

Author information

1
Department of Outpatient Community Care, Altrecht Mental Health Care, Zeist, The Netherlands. b.koekkoek@altrecht.nl

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To determine which patient, professional, treatment and/or social variables make community psychiatric nurses (CPNs) label non-psychotic chronic patients as 'difficult'.

METHODS:

A questionnaire was designed and administered to 1,946 CPNs in the Netherlands. Logistic regression was used to design models that most accurately described the variables that contributed to perceived difficulty.

RESULTS:

Six variables were retained in the final logistic model. Perception-related variables (feeling powerless, feeling that the patient is able but unwilling to change, and pessimism about the patient's change potential) dominated treatment-related variables (number of contacts per week and admission to a locked ward in the last year) and social variables (number of psychosocial problems).

CONCLUSION:

This research shows that perceived difficulty is related to complex treatment situations, not so much to individual patient characteristics. If the constructed model has good predictive qualities, which remains to be tested in longitudinal research, it may be possible to accurately predict perceived patient difficulty. When used as a screening tool, such a model could improve treatment outcomes.

PMID:
20602084
PMCID:
PMC3173642
DOI:
10.1007/s00127-010-0264-5
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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