Adaptive regulation of positive and negative affect after the loss of a loved one may foster recovery. In two studies, using similar methods but different samples, we explored the association between positive (i.e., dampening and enhancing) and negative (i.e., rumination) affect regulation strategies and symptoms levels of postloss psychopathology. Study 1 used data from 187 people confronted with the death of a loved one. In study 2, the sample consisted of 134 relatives of long-term missing persons. Participants completed self-reports tapping prolonged grief, depression, posttraumatic stress symptoms, and affect regulation strategies. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that both negative and positive affect regulation strategies explained significant amounts of variance symptom levels in both samples. In line with previous work, our results suggest that negative and positive affect regulation strategies relate to postloss psychopathology. Future research should explore how both affect regulation strategies may adequately be addressed in treatment.
INTRODUCTION: An Advance Healthcare Directive (AHD) is a written document that contains a patient-in-care's will and preferences concerning the treatment options available to them, should they lack decision-making capacity. AHDs are completed within a broader framework known as Advance Care Planning. No study has explored the viewpoint of Spanish mental healthcare professionals towards AHDs.
AIM: To explore the viewpoint of mental health professionals towards the implementation of AHDs in mental health.
METHOD: A qualitative study was conducted using semi-structured interviews that were thematically analysed.
FINDINGS: Three main themes were identified: care planning culture; barriers for the practical management of AHDs; and reasons to not honour patient-in-care AHDs.
DISCUSSION: Professionals find it pragmatically difficult to stop applying traditional paternalistic practices. To implement AHDs, improving the knowledge and awareness of AHDs and management of non-technical skills through training is required. Such training should include users and families and allow for compliance with United Nations requirements.
IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: AHDs offer important information regarding user preferences, although they pose challenges for practices. Acquiring an up-to-date perspective on the attitudes of professionals towards AHDs allows organizations to attend to particular aspects that require reinforcement. Wider awareness, staff training, and new ways of relating to users are necessary to implement AHDs in Spanish context.
RELEVANCE STATEMENT: A better understanding of the attitudes of Spanish mental health professionals towards AHDs was achieved. Despite the implementation of AHDs being an important and potentially beneficial initiative, mental health professionals find many pragmatic issues that need addressing before AHDs become a reality in their clinical practice. Wider awareness, staff training, personalized assistance and new ways of relating to users are required to implement AHDs in everyday practice.
In the past, palliative care has been primarily cancer focused, and more recently the scope of care has broadened to include other life-limiting illnesses. With increasing incidence of multiple comorbidities amongst palliative care patient populations, it is less certain whether access to, and treatment within, palliative care settings are adequate for those who have pre-existing serious and persistent mental illnesses. This paper explores the key concepts of palliative care for people with serious and persistent mental illness (SPMI), the challenges present in nursing practice, and the making of end-of-life decisions, in order to consider how comprehensive, person-centred care might be given. Although some improvements have been reported over the past 14 years, this population appears to remain underserved in palliative care. The need for more specialized education for nurses in both palliative care and mental health care, and better communication and collaboration between the two specialities is needed. Greater collaboration between disciplines may ensure that these patients receive the same standard of care experienced by the general population.
BACKGROUND: Some patients develop severe and persistent mental illness (SPMI) which is therapy-refractory. The needs of these patients sometimes remain unmet by therapeutic interventions and they are at high risk of receiving care that is inconsistent with their life goals. Scholarly discourse has recently begun to address the suitability of palliative care approaches targeting at enhancing quality of life for these patients, but remains to be developed.
METHOD: A cross-sectional survey asked 1311 German-speaking psychiatrists in Switzerland (the total number of German-speaking members of the Swiss Society for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy) about the care of SPMI patients in general, and about palliative care approaches in particular. 457 (34.9%) returned the completed survey. In addition, participants were asked to evaluate three case vignettes of patients with SPMI.
RESULTS: The reduction of suffering and maintaining daily life functioning of the patient were rated as considerably more important in the treatment of SPMI than impeding suicide and curing the underlying illness. There was broad agreement that SPMI can be terminal (93.7%), and that curative approaches may sometimes be futile (e.g. 72.4% for the anorexia nervosa case vignette). Furthermore, more than 75% of the participating psychiatrists were in favour of palliative care approaches for SPMI.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of the present study suggest that the participating psychiatrists in Switzerland regard certain forms of SPMI as posing high risk of death. Additionally, a majority of respondents consider palliative care approaches appropriate for this vulnerable group of patients. However, the generalizability of the results to all psychiatrists in Switzerland or other mental health professionals involved in the care of SPMI is limited. This limitation is important considering the reservations towards palliative care in the context of psychiatric illness, mainly because of the association with death and futility. Palliative care approaches, however, are applicable in conjunction with other therapies intended to prolong life. A next step could be to involve service users and develop a consensus of what palliative care might encompass in SPMI. A framework for identifying which patients might benefit from palliative care, should be explored for the future development of care for SPMI patients.
BACKGROUND: Increasing attention to palliative care for the general population has led to the development of various evidence-based or consensus-based tools and interventions. However, specific tools and interventions are needed for people with severe mental illness (SMI) who have a life-threatening illness. The aim of this systematic review is to summarize the scientific evidence on tools and interventions in palliative care for this group.
METHODS: Systematic searches were done in the PubMed, Cochrane Library, CINAHL, PsycINFO and Embase databases, supplemented by reference tracking, searches on the internet with free text terms, and consultations with experts to identify relevant literature. Empirical studies with qualitative, quantitative or mixed-methods designs concerning tools and interventions for use in palliative care for people with SMI were included. Methodological quality was assessed using a critical appraisal instrument for heterogeneous study designs. Stepwise study selection and the assessment of methodological quality were done independently by two review authors.
RESULTS: Four studies were included, reporting on a total of two tools and one multi-component intervention. One study concerned a tool to identify the palliative phase in patients with SMI. This tool appeared to be usable only in people with SMI with a cancer diagnosis. Furthermore, two related studies focused on a tool to involve people with SMI in discussions about medical decisions at the end of life. This tool was assessed as feasible and usable in the target group. One other study concerned the Dutch national Care Standard for palliative care, including a multi-component intervention. The Palliative Care Standard also appeared to be feasible and usable in a mental healthcare setting, but required further tailoring to suit this specific setting. None of the included studies investigated the effects of the tools and interventions on quality of life or quality of care.
CONCLUSIONS: Studies of palliative care tools and interventions for people with SMI are scarce. The existent tools and intervention need further development and should be tailored to the care needs and settings of these people. Further research is needed on the feasibility, usability and effects of tools and interventions for palliative care for people with SMI.
Requests for hastened death and suicidal ideation may be more prevalent in populations approaching the end of life. Often these wishes and thoughts occur in the context of concurrent psychiatric disorders and emotional suffering. We discuss the case of a veteran with terminal lung cancer and comorbid psychiatric illness who attempted suicide while under the care of an inpatient interdisciplinary hospice team and describe our team's response to this suicide attempt. We review risk factors for suicidality at end of life, challenges of distinguishing desire for hastened death from suicidality, and the ethics of resuscitation of a dying patient after a suicide attempt.
Despite profound adversity exposure (loss, trauma) among delinquents, with adversity linked to early-onset persistent delinquency [EOPD], externalizing syndromes (Conduct Disorder) continue to overshadow impairing internalizing syndromes. Three understudied factors potentially contribute to both syndromes among delinquents: bereavement-related distress [BRD] from death-exposures; psychopathy-spectrum traits associated with system-involvement; and emotional abuse, implicated in lifespan morbidities. Therefore, we characterized loss/BRD among 107 EOPD adolescent girls and boys, comparing: 1) psychopathology and maltreatment (emotional, physical and sexual abuse); and 2) adversity-related (BRD, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder [PTSD], maltreatment) and psychopathy-spectrum predictors of internalizing and externalizing syndromes. Death exposure was common, resulting in developmental disruptions (school difficulties: 49.4%) and clinically significant BRD (33.8%), with girls evidencing greater BRD severity. BRD and psychopathy-traits, not PTSD, positively predicted all youths' internalizing, and boys' externalizing, syndromes. More frequent physical abuse increased both syndromes among boys. Emotional abuse alone predicted girls' externalizing syndromes, highlighting the contribution of this overlooked maltreatment-type.
BACKGROUND: Previous research has not focused on differences at the end of life among Medicare beneficiaries with, and without, a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders (ADRDs).
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to examine differences in utilization of inpatient services and Medicare expenditures (overall and by category) in the last six months of life for patients with, versus those without, a diagnosis of ADRD.
DESIGN: The study used 2013 Medicare Research Identifiable Files (5% sample) to study utilization and expenditures for a full six months before death (n=7895 for ADRD; n=30,639 for non-ADRD). A generalized linear model with a gamma distribution was used to examine the association of ADRD with end-of-life service utilization and expenditures.
RESULTS: ADRD patients were overall less expensive than their non-ADRD peers through reduced use of high-cost services, and urban patients were more likely than rural patients to use hospice and other services among
both the ADRD and non-ADRD groups. After controlling for age, gender, race, dual eligibility, residence, region, chronic conditions, and type of service utilization, ADRD beneficiaries cost Medicare 11% less than
non-ADRD beneficiaries (p<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Future research should examine the informal caregiving costs of caring, which is a significant part of care for an ADRD patient, as the residential setting of the beneficiary highly influences costs.
OBJECTIVES: This study investigated the use of opioid treatment plans that included the implementation of opioid dependence risk with a validated screening tool and opioid dependence risk tool (UDT) in a noncancer palliative pain clinic.
METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records for diagnostic information, information on analgesic medications, daily morphine equivalent dose, presence of pain management agreements and opioid dependence risk tools (ORT), and UDT. We recorded hospital days and emergency department visits.
RESULTS: Seventy-four patients were followed for a mean of 15.9 months. Ninety-three percent of patients had pain management agreements and 74% had ORT. The median score was 8: consistent with a high risk. More than half had UDT and 17.6% of patients had unexpected findings. Fifty-nine percent of patients had a psychiatric diagnosis. Hospital days and emergency department visits decreased by more than 30% ( P = .015 and P = .019). Significance of Findings: Both mental health problems and aberrant drug use were common in patients seen in a noncancer palliative care clinic. There were significant reductions in acute care utilization in the 12 months post intake in the clinic.
Among people with mental illness, stigma experiences can increase suicidality, and suicidality itself is associated with negative stereotypes. Suicide attempt survivors experience both mental illness stigma and suicide stigma, which could contribute to their increased risk for completed suicide. We interviewed 13 suicide attempt survivors regarding experiences and consequences of stigma and identified five stigma-related themes. Stigma led to substantial emotional strain, including loneliness and hopelessness, which are important precursors of suicidality. Our findings suggest that both mental illness stigma and suicide stigma can contribute to suicidality among people with mental illness in general, and in suicide attempt survivors specifically.
Ways of dealing with bereavement and grief are influenced by the norms of one's cultural identity. Cultural assessment of bereavement and grief is therefore needed for a comprehensive evaluation of grief-related psychopathology and for negotiating appropriate treatment. Cultural aspects of bereavement and grief include cultural traditions related to death, bereavement, and mourning as well as help seeking and coping. To facilitate clinical exploration of cultural aspects of bereavement and grief, the authors propose a set of brief, person-centered, and open-ended questions as a draft supplementary module to the DSM-5 Cultural Formulation Interview.
The present study examines how different chronic illnesses and mental illness comorbidity (chronic illness with complexity [CIC]) associate with components of advance care planning (ACP). We also explore the role self-perceived burden plays in the relationship between illness and ACP. Data were gathered from a cross-sectional survey of 305 elderly participants from the New Jersey End-of-Life study. Participants with diabetes and those with cardiovascular disease (CVD) are less likely, while participants with CIC are more likely, to plan for the end-of-life. Participants with diabetes are less likely to make formal plans, whereas those with CVD are less likely to hold informal discussions. CIC is associated with increased odds of having an advance directive, but no other form of ACP. Self-perceived burden did not appear to be the gateway by which illness groups differentially engaged in ACP. Future research should investigate what aspects of illnesses drive ACP.
L'EPSM du Soleil Levant accueille des usagers au vieillissement singulier du fait de leur profil complexe, mêlant polyaddiction, troubles somatiques et/ou psychiatriques. A partir de sa pratique et dans une démarche associant direction, personnel et résidents, il mène et développe une réflexion sur une prise en charge et un accompagnement fondés avant tout sur la prise en compte des besoins des résidents. (Réd.).
Origine : BDSP. Notice produite par OFDT 99EAHR0x. Diffusion soumise à autorisation
BACKGROUND: Withdrawal of life support for an individual with refractory schizophrenia after attempted suicide remains controversial. Discussion regarding prognosis of mental illness and the distinction between somatic and mental illness brings out many ethical issues. This article will examine the role and weight of severe persistent mental illness in the withdrawal of life support after attempted suicide.
CASE DESCRIPTION: A 30-year-old gentleman with deafness and schizophrenia was admitted with multiple self-inflicted visceral stab wounds. He developed postoperative complications necessitating ongoing critical care. The parties involved were as follows: the patient, his parents, the critical care trauma service, the palliative and psychiatry consult services, and the ethics committee. Over the patient's hospital course, his parents struggled to reconcile his poor preinjury quality of life with his ongoing need for intensive medical intervention. The primary and consulting teams were required to integrate differing perspectives on the patient's past responsiveness to treatment and the extent to which additional efforts might advance his quality of life and limit his future suffering and suicidality. The patient's surrogate decision makers unanimously requested withdrawal of life support. An ethics committee convened to address the question of whether refractory schizophrenia can produce so poor a quality of life as to merit the withdrawal of life-sustaining measures after a suicide attempt. Consensus was achieved, and life-sustaining measures were subsequently withdrawn, allowing the patient to pass away peacefully in an inpatient hospice facility.
Personality can be thought of as a set of attitudes and behaviours that are relatively consistent across time and circumstances. The author details different types of personality disorder and explains their needs at end of life.
In exceptional cases, suicide might be considered a rational choice of a competent person, even in the presence of psychiatric illness. But unless a truly rigorous prospective review system is in place for such cases, countries should not legalize the practice.
Objective: People with severe mental illness (SMI) have a life expectancy 10–20 years lower than that of the general population. There is limited published research concerning the end-of-life care needs of people with SMI. This study seeks to understand the views and experiences of clinicians on the barriers to providing such care to people with SMI.
Methods: Four focus groups were convened for two cohorts – palliative care and mental health. In total, 23 clinical staff from a range of professional backgrounds attended the focus groups, which were facilitated using the ‘CUbe’ method to enhance the discussion. Data was analysed using an adapted framework analysis method. Key themes were developed and implications for clinical practice were identified.
Results: Barriers to care were identified as: ; The structure of the system ; The presentation of the patient ; The confidence of the clinician ; The problem of partnership.
Issues around clinician knowledge, skills, confidence and resilience across disciplines was a major finding.
Significance of results: The findings highlight the need for interventions and resources to be developed that support the improved confidence and knowledge of clinical staff. There is a need for further research that explores improvements to care, particularly focusing on improving the knowledge, skills and confidence of clinical staff.
OBJECTIVE: The psychosocial challenges confronted by bereaved survivors may contribute to poor bereavement adjustment. Measures of the challenges of bereavement are limited. This study is a preliminary examination of the factor structure of a new measure of bereavement challenges and their relationships to quality of life and mental illness in bereaved cancer caregivers. This measure was designed to identify intervention targets to reduce the likelihood of prolonged grief.
METHODS: Caregivers of advanced cancer patients were administered measures of bereavement challenges (Bereavement Challenges Scale, BCS), quality of life (Medical Outcomes Study Short Form-36), prolonged grief (PG-13), and mental disorders (Structured Clinical Interview for the DSM-IV). Principal component factor analyses identified the underlying factor structure of the BCS. We examined associations between the factors and caregiver quality of life, prolonged grief, and rates of mental disorders.
RESULTS: A factor analysis identified five factors: "Challenges with Connecting with Others," "Challenges with Change," "Challenges Imagining a Hopeful Future," "Challenges with Accepting the Loss," and "Challenges with Guilt." Greater endorsement of bereavement challenges was associated with worse quality of life, more severe symptoms of prolonged grief, and greater likelihood of meeting criteria for a mental disorder.
CONCLUSIONS: Assessing the challenges associated with bereavement is important to understanding barriers to bereaved individuals' adjustment. The five factors of the BCS point to potential targets for clinical intervention. Additional research on the BCS is needed, including validation in larger more diverse samples, and confirmation that reduction of these challenges is associated with less psychiatric morbidity and, specifically, symptoms of prolonged grief.
Close relationships are a resource for mental and physical health that, like other social resources, is unequally distributed in the population. This article focuses on racial disparities in the loss of relationships across the life course. Racial disparities in life expectancy in the United States mean that black Americans experience the deaths of more friends and family members than do white Americans from childhood through later life. I argue that these losses are a unique type of stress and adversity that, through interconnected biopsychosocial pathways, contribute to disadvantage in health over the life course. I focus particularly on how the interconnected pathways associated with loss undermine opportunities for and increase risks to social ties throughout life, adding to disadvantage in health. I call on social scientists and policy makers to draw greater attention to this unique source of disadvantage for black children, adults, and families.
BACKGROUND: Bill C-14 allows for medical assistance in dying (MAID) for patients who have intolerable physical or psychological suffering that occurs in the context of a reasonably foreseeable death. In Canada, psychiatrist support for MAID on the basis of mental illness and beliefs influencing level of support are unknown. The objectives of this research were to 1) determine if psychiatrists are supportive of MAID under certain conditions and on the basis of mental illness and 2) determine what factors are related to psychiatrist support for MAID on the basis of mental illness.
METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted among 528 psychiatrists in Canada using an online survey platform (February 19 to March 11, 2016).
RESULTS: The response rate was 20.9% ( n = 528). Most psychiatrists supported the legalisation of MAID in some circumstances (72%); however, only 29.4% supported MAID on the basis of mental illness. Factors correlating with decreased support for MAID for mental illness were the belief that MAID for mental illness would change the psychiatrists' commitment to their patients through enduring suffering, having a personal faith, and having had past patients who would have received MAID for mental illness were it legal but instead went on to recover.
INTERPRETATION: This study found that most psychiatrists do not support the legalisation of MAID for mental illness, despite being quite supportive of MAID in general. Objections seemed to be based upon concern for vulnerable patients, personal moral objections, and concern for the effect it would have on the therapeutic alliance.