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Floods in 2007 and older adult services: lessons learnt

  • Joseph Hayes (a1), Julian Mason (a2), Fay Brown (a1) and Rebecca Mather (a1)
Abstract
Aims and Method

To review the clinical and managerial impact of flooding on a community mental health team (CMHT) for older adults by prospectively recording all flooding related events met by the CMHT.

Results

Of 348 individuals known to the CMHT, 87 lived in flood affected areas. In nine patients symptoms deteriorated. There were two new referrals as a direct consequence of the flooding. Flood effects can be grouped into: new mental illness, management problems, CMHT workload, and secondary benefits.

Clinical Implications

The immediate and delayed problems caused by flooding to the elderly with mental illness and dementia include unmasking cognitive impairment and provoking exacerbations in depressive and anxiety disorders. Personal evacuation plans should be used when moving individuals with marked cognitive impairment to avoid difficulties with identification. Overcrowding of care homes used to temporarily accommodate additional residents can contribute to behavioural changes and psychological symptoms in those with pre-existing dementia.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Floods in 2007 and older adult services: lessons learnt

  • Joseph Hayes (a1), Julian Mason (a2), Fay Brown (a1) and Rebecca Mather (a1)
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