To examine patients' views on the quality of care they received before, during and after electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), a questionnaire was completed by 389 patients who had received ECT at ECT Accreditation Service (ECTAS) member clinics.
The nine key standards set by ECTAS relating to quality of patient care were rated as having been met by 65% or more respondents. Most patients found staff friendly and reassuring and often commented on how this had helped reduce their anxiety prior to ECT. Patients were less positive about standards relating to being introduced to staff prior to ECT, and the quality of the waiting and post-recovery areas.
Patient views are important indicators of quality of care and should be used to improve ECT practice. Anxiety about ECT is helped by supportive and caring staff. Improvements could be made to practices related to waiting for and recovering from ECT.
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