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Hot beds of general psychiatry: A national survey of psychiatric intensive care units

  • M. Dominic Beer (a1), Carol Paton (a2) and Stephen Pereira (a3)
Abstract

Little is known of the facilities available nationally to treat the most disturbed patients. A postal survey sent to all pharmacists in the UK known to have a special interest in psychiatry identified 110 psychiatric intensive care units. They varied in size from four to 30 beds, with the small units having low and the larger units very high occupancy levels. Many units accepted a mixture of informal patients directly from the community, detained patients and referrals from the prison service. Medical cover was variable, multidisciplinary team-working poor, and the existence of written policies unsatisfactory. Staff often felt undervalued with little control over admissions and discharges. There is currently no national or local support network for these units.

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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.
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References
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Ford, I. & Whiffen, M. (1991) The role of the psychiatric ICU. Nursing Times, 87, 4749.
Mitchell, G. D. (1992) A survey of psychiatric intensive care units in Scotland. Health Bulletin, 50, 228232.
Zigmond, A. (1995) Special care wards: are they special? Psychiatric Bulletin, 19, 310312.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Hot beds of general psychiatry: A national survey of psychiatric intensive care units

  • M. Dominic Beer (a1), Carol Paton (a2) and Stephen Pereira (a3)
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